25 Songs That Were Banned From the Radio After 9/11
As we recognize the anniversary of 9/11, it is hard not to remember the unforgettable days and weeks that followed the attacks on our nation. As Americans healed both physically and emotionally, as we searched for the missing and the dead, as we came together as a country unlike any other time in my life, we were sensitive to one another.
Radio played a big part in the way we recovered. From the first reports of what we initially thought was a small commuter plane hitting one of the twin towers in New York City, to the uncertainty of where and when the next attack might take place, the radio was a place where Americans turned to for emotional support, information, and sometimes an escape from the harsh reality of what was going on in the world around us.
One of the ways radio responded was to be extra sensitive to our listeners, being careful not to play songs with titles or lyrics that might stir up the raw emotions with which we were all dealing. Some of the bigger broadcasting companies at the time went as far as to send out an internal memo to on air staff members. It was a list of songs that on-air personnel were strongly advised to avoid.
Looking at the list today, 20 years later, it is still painfully obvious why many of the titles landed on the list of "banned" songs. Others, however, are not so obvious, and it may take a minute to run through the lyrics in your head and remember the emotional trauma that the nation had gone through.