The hottest music star to date in 2021, Morgan Wallen, suddenly got very cold. His music was taken from Cumulus Media, the nation’s second largest radio station, at midnight CT after a storm erupted after he was caught on video using a racial slur.
Cumulus, which is particularly powerful in the field of national radio, sent a directive to the program directors of all its 400+ stations with the header “MORGAN WALLEN – EXTREMELY IMPORTANT”. The post read: “The team, unfortunately country music star Morgan Wallen was filmed on Sunday night using a racial slur. Effective immediately, we request that all music by Morgan Wallen be removed from our playlists without exception. More soon.”
The directive was signed by Brian Philips, EVP of programming for the channel, and John Dimick, the company’s head of programming operations. In particular, no mention was made of the temporary ban or waiting for more details on the incident.
Other radio stations across the country are expected to follow with an at least temporary ban on Wallen’s music, despite the fact that his release “Dangerous: The Double Album” is set to have a fourth week on top. charts, setting a record for weeks running at No.1 not seen by a country artist since Garth Brooks in the late ’90s.
Wallen released a statement Tuesday night after TMZ first reported the incident, saying, “I’m embarrassed and sorry. I used an unacceptable and inappropriate racial slur that I wish I could take back. There are never any excuses for using this type of language. I would like to sincerely apologize for using that word. I promise to do better.
On Tuesday evening, Wallen’s rep said there would be no further immediate comment. Representatives for Republic Records, which releases their music in conjunction with Nashville’s Big Loud label, did not immediately return requests for comment.
The video, posted Tuesday night on TMZ and reportedly recorded by Wallen’s neighbors, shows him yelling profanity after a night out in Nashville. “Take care of that motherfucker pussy,” Wallen said, followed by, “Take care of that asshole n –––.
It wasn’t the first time in the past few months that Wallen had been embroiled in a scandal, although the previous instance had his back rolled faster than this one. In October 2020, he was seen partying without a mask in Alabama, which cost him a “Saturday Night Live” performance he was due to do the following weekend – but it was postponed until December after performing. apologies, and the show brought it to light. in a sketch in which it appeared.
While some fans have pointed out that Wallen seems to be using the term as a “term of affection” among friends and not as invective, the zero tolerance policy for the word is unlikely to earn him a reprieve anytime soon among major media companies. , no matter how fans might react when many of them wake up to the news that one of their heroes is in disgrace on Wednesday morning.
The Wallen scandal comes at a particularly inopportune time for country music – not that there has ever been an opportune one – as many actors in the genre have recently been involved in public discussions about a racial assessment they deem necessary in the country, trying to stimulate the profiles of black artists who have existed for the most part on the fringes to show that music is taking small steps towards real diversity. Wallen’s statement, as the face of the genre right now, is likely to represent a huge setback in these efforts and reinforce stereotypes … that even some stars of the format say are true stereotypes.
Tweeted Maren Morris: “He’s actually representative of our city because it’s not his first ‘fight’ and he just demolished a huge streaming record last month regardless. We all know it wasn’t the first time he had used this word. We keep them rich and protected at all costs without recourse. “
It’s actually representative of our city because it’s not his first “fight” and he just demolished a huge streaming disc last month anyway. We all know it wasn’t the first time he had used this word. We keep them rich and protected at all costs without recourse.
– MAREN MORRIS (@MarenMorris) February 3, 2021
Still, others insisted it was a failure, not iconic. “The Nashville news tonight doesn’t represent country music,” Kelsea Ballerini tweeted.
It is not the first time that he has used this “unacceptable” racial insult and we all know it. So what exactly will you do about it? The crickets will not work this time.
– Mickey Guyton (@MickeyGuyton) February 3, 2021
One of the few black singers to have a major presence in contemporary country music, Mickey Guyton, quickly tweeted that it was not entirely unexpected. “The hatred runs deep. Smfh, ”quoting the story from TMZ. She then continued her post with, “This isn’t the first time he’s used this ‘unacceptable’ racial slur and we all know that. So what exactly will you do about it? The crickets will not work this time. “
How popular was Wallen’s music, before Tuesday night? In addition to having by far the best-selling and most released album of any genre since “Dangerous: The Double Album” made its successful debut three weeks ago, Wallen currently owns five of the top 20 tracks. of the Rolling Stone track record. With the roll it was launched on, Wallen’s album may continue to air in significant numbers, but that won’t be with the help of television appearances or the continuation of massive radio airing of so early.
Nashville news tonight does not represent country music.
– Kelsea Ballerini (@KelseaBallerini) February 3, 2021