The rapper’s lawyers recently reached out to BMI, which licenses music for various purposes, and demanded it revoke the Republican presidential candidate’s license to use his music at campaign events, according to the Daily Mail.
Ramaswamy, 38, has been known to bust out a few verses of Eminem’s Oscar-winning song “Lose Yourself,” at events, but the Aug. 23 letter sent to his campaign says that the message “serves as notice that the Eminem Works are excluded from the Agreement effective immediately.”
In addition, the letter says, “BMI will consider any performance of the Eminem Works by the Vivek 2024 campaign from this date forward to be a material breach of the Agreement for which BMI reserves all rights and remedies with respect thereto.”
You can see the letter below.
Lawyers for rapper Eminem have sent Vivek Ramaswamy a cease and desist letter demanding the candidate stop using his music on the campaign trail.
No more extremely cringey ‘Lose Yourself’ performances for Vivek! https://t.co/ygni1NSBsUpic.twitter.com/vsI9JNkXFV
— Sawyer Hackett (@SawyerHackett) August 28, 2023
Tricia McLaughlin, a spokesperson for Ramaswamy, suggested the campaign will obey the request in a statement to HuffPost.
“Vivek just got on the stage and cut loose. To the American people’s chagrin, we will have to leave the rapping to the Real Slim Shady,” she said by email.
Ramaswamy also tweeted out a link to the Daily Mail story, saying, “Will The REAL Slim Shady Please Stand Up? He didn’t just say what I think he did, did he?”
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) August 28, 2023
To be fair, Ramaswamy comes by his love of Eminem honestly, having liked the rapper’s music since he was an undergrad at Harvard University.
Back then, he occasionally performed “as a libertarian-minded rap artist” who rapped under the stage name Da Vek,according to Politico.
Ramaswamy was a fan of Eminem and used to perform “Lose Yourself” at Harvard open-mic nights.
“He’s growing up in the trailers, with a single mom, and he wants to make it. He’s going to use the moment to do it. He feels like he’s going to use the moment to do it, he seizes it and then he makes it happen, and I thought it was a pretty cool story,” Ramaswamy told Politico.
“I didn’t grow up in a trailer, but I also didn’t grow up in the same circumstances that most of my peers at Harvard did, either. I aspired to achieve what many of their parents did. It kind of spoke to me, I would say,” he said.
Being told to stop rapping may be the least of Ramaswamy’s current concerns.
The multimillionaire biotech investor seeking the Republican presidential nomination came under fire this weekend after he characterized Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), prominent author Ibram X. Kendi, and other progressive anti-racists as akin to“grand wizards of the modern KKK.”
On Sunday, he also had a tense exchange with “Meet The Press” host Chuck Todd, who pressed him on recent statements about the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection that were “the exact opposite” of what Ramaswamy wrote in his book, “Nation of Victims.”