The songwriters of Broadway’s Hair have demanded that the presidential campaign of Donald Trump cease and desist using their Grammy-winning song “The Age of Aquarius” from the score in campaign rallies.
The song was used November 3 to accompany the entrace of Trump’s wife, Melania, to a rally in Berwyn, PA.
Writers James Rado, Galt MacDermot and the estate of Gerome Ragni issued a joint statement demanding that the song not be used again. Citing the lyric “harmony and understanding, sympathy and trust abounding...,” co-author Rado said, “The Trump political campaign is a far cry from the utopian vision of the new Aquarian age. We want to make sure they discontinue using the song.”
A spokesperson for the writers told Playbill.com that “lawyers are working on this as we speak,” and both Trump’s attorney and the leaders of the campaign will be notified.
Here is a CNN report that includes the playing of the song at the speech:
Hair originally opened at Joseph Papp’s Public Theater in October 1967 with a run at the Cheetah nightclub following in December 1967. The show opened on Broadway in April 1968 and ran for 1,750 performances. The musical has been produced around the world, and revived on Broadway in 2009, winning the Tony Award for Best Musical Revival.
The Fifth Dimension’s version of the song “Aquarius” won a Grammy Award for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Group in 1970. The lyrics of this song were based on the astrological belief that the world would soon be entering the "Age of Aquarius,” an age of peace, love, and light for humanity. The original Broadway cast recording received a Grammy Award in 1968 for Best Score from an Original Cast Show Album and sold nearly three million copies in the U.S. by December 1969.