Morgan Wallen Is Back on Country Radio — Officially Reinstated by iHeartRadio, Cumulus Media, Cox Radio Station Conglomerates

Morgan Wallen reappears on iHeartMedia-owned Country 92.5 in Connecticut on June 3rd.
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Morgan Wallen reappears on iHeartMedia-owned Country 92.5 in Connecticut on June 3rd.
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Morgan Wallen reappears on iHeartMedia-owned WWYZ Country 92.5 in Connecticut on June 3rd.

Morgan Wallen is now being reinstated by major radio conglomerates who banned him back in February.

Last month, we first reported that Pandora had quietly reinstated Morgan Wallen into their customized online radio stations. Now, less than four months after banning the artist from their broadcasts, major radio conglomerates are following suit. According to multiple tips from both industry sources and fans, Morgan Wallen is now being reintegrated into country radio playlists nationwide, with potentially hundreds of stations lifting their bans this week.

At this stage, it’s unclear how many country radio stations are reinstating Wallen. But country stations owned by major conglomerates iHeartRadio (iHeartMedia), Cumulus Media, Cox Radio (Cox Media Group), and Alpha Media have now been confirmed as playing Wallen songs.

That includes some seriously-large stations, including KPLX 99.5 ‘The Wolf’ in Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX (owned by Cumulus Media), WSIX ‘The Big 98’ in Nashville (owned by iHeartMedia), KKBQ ‘The New 93Q’ in Pasadena, TX (owned by Cox Media Group), and KUPL ‘98.7 The Bull’ in Portland, OR (owned by Alpha Media).

We’ve also received reports of Wallen finding his way back onto stations owned by Beasley Broadcasting Group and Audacy (formerly Entercom Communications), but could not confirm specific stations by press time.

An in-dash screengrab of Morgan Wallen recently being played on country radio station Big98 in Nashville
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An in-dash screengrab of Morgan Wallen recently being played on country radio station Big98 in Nashville
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An in-dash screengrab of Morgan Wallen recently being played on Big98 in Nashville, an iHeartMedia country radio station.

It’s also worth noting that Cumulus Media — which was the first to ban Wallen back in February — has been quietly reinstating the singer since March. By mid-March, roughly 45 days after Wallen was publicly yanked by the radio station conglomerate, songs from the singer popped up on member stations 92.3 KRST in Albuquerque, NM and 105.5 WYTM in Fayetteville, TN. It’s unclear if those reinstatements were approved by Cumulus higher-ups, or were merely program directors breaking ranks.

The list of stations re-adding Wallen is certainly substantial — though again, it’s too early to get a full count. But based on the early list, it appears that iHeartMedia is unilaterally lifting its ban. As of this evening, a long list of iHeartRadio stations are actively playing Wallen’s music, including WIKX ‘Kix 92.9’ in Charlotte Harbor, FL; K102 in Minneapolis; 99.5 WGAR in Cleveland, OH; US103.5 in Tampa, FL;  Country 92.5 in Connecticut; and 101.7 ‘The Bull’ in Boston.

A number of smaller, independent radio stations reinstated Wallen months ago. That includes Knoxville, TN-based 96.7 Merle FM, which placed Wallen back into heavy rotation after learning that 92% of listeners voted to reinstate the country artist. And a smattering of smaller country radio stations refused to remove Wallen in the first place. But the sharp reversals by conglomerates like iHeartMedia means that a dramatically larger number of stations are back on board.

And make no mistake: these radio conglomerates moved quickly and decisively to remove Wallen after the singer was filmed uttering the n-word outside of his home in early February.

In a companywide email leaked on February 3rd, Cumulus Media informed all member stations that Wallen was to be removed “without exception”. The email, whose title was marked ‘EXTREMELY IMPORTANT,’ stated in part: “Unfortunately, country music star Morgan Wallen was captured on video Sunday evening using a racial slur. Effective immediately, we request that all of Morgan Wallen’s music be removed from our playlists without exception. More to follow.”

Beyond that email, Cumulus did not offer any public statements on the matter. But other conglomerates issued clear statements declaring that Wallen was being quickly scrubbed from their stations. That was regarded as a potential death blow to Wallen’s career, based on the serious influence that country radio stations still wield.

But instead of crushing an artist, removing Wallen exposed just how much competition exists for listeners. And Wallen quickly prevailed: shortly after the ban, streams of Morgan Wallen songs surged on Spotify, Apple Music, and other online platforms, despite efforts to remove the country singer from marquee playlists. Even Pandora was forced to relent, most likely to stem an exodus of angry country fans.


16 Responses

  1. Carter Burger

    Yeah, when the president’s son is caught using the same term without consequence, it’s kinda hard to punish anyone else for it

    • Jody

      Posting under different names doesn’t make your idiot comments valid.

  2. Tu Soon?

    Why are rappers allowed to use the same word nonstop without consequence? I thought it was terribly offensive, but apparently not if rappers say it.

    Paul: go ahead and delete my comment already since it doesn’t fit in with your political views.

    • Angelito

      Didn’t want to actually address his situation, so you make another lame attempt to justify the racist actions of Wallen. Typical

        • Angelito

          Coming from the one who deflects from the topic and diverts. Jeez.

          • Tu Soon?

            Since you seem confused, I will ask again: why are blacks allowed to use the n-word?

    • Homer Plessy

      Most black people are stupid today because they’ve been listening to white leftist elitists or black race hustlers rather than reading MLK, watching Malcolm X videos, and realizing that Democrats have always been the party of slavery, racism, Jim Crow, and selling out black workers to Mexico or China. Everybody wants to be the House Negro for Massa and look down upon the Field Negro.

      Joe Biden got an award from segregationist George Wallace and bragged about it for decades. Biden eulogized former KKK kleagle and Senator Robert Byrd when he died a decade ago.

      Meanwhile, our drunk and obnoxious neighbor Morgan Wallen used the n-word to a white friend as a term of endearment, and it was captured by a Ring door bell, and now the entire world is ending. Whatever.

      • Reuger

        Most black people? You’re a mess. And the information you present is either skewed or lacking pieces to deceive readers. Again, you’re a mess.

      • Mrs. Wallen

        Agree ? %!! Glad you said it out loud! I’m tired of being silenced, myself! Oh, and just for the record everyone #TrumpWon!!

        • Morgan

          Listen up bitch. You’re a fucking disaster of a person. America lost on every front because of Trump.

  3. Paul

    Hooray! Where is the Hitler speech radio channel? Wallen can be added to that playlist, also. Plenty of room for racists in Amerikkka.

    • Herr Funkheimer

      Make sure to include the owners of Twitter, Facebook, and Google. They are the most dangerous men in the United States.

  4. Duh

    Funny how the writer of this article says ‘Pandora quietly reinstates Morgan Wallen’
    What are they supposed to do? Take out billboards across the country? Send flyers to peoples homes, make public service announcements, etc.