PLEASE NOTE: THE POLL HAS ENDED AND RESULTS WERE AIRED. WITH MORE THAN 35,000 VOTES, 92% OF LISTENERS VOTED TO REINSTATE MORGAN WALLEN ON 96.7 MERLE.
Knoxville, Tennessee – 96.7 Merle aired a message to listeners about the Morgan Wallen TMZ video and the consequences that followed of removing all his songs from country music radio stations in Knoxville (his home market) and across the country. The message shares that “no one liked the word and behavior in the TMZ video” filmed at Morgan Wallen’s home. The radio station placed a poll on the 96.7 Merle Facebook page and the 96.7 Merle website saying after much thought, they believe their responsibility is to allow listeners to tell the radio station if listeners want to have Morgan Wallen’s music banned or have 96.7 Merle return popular Morgan Wallen songs back to the station playlist.
“We were disappointed by the behavior in the video,” says station owner Ron Meredith. “But we were also uncomfortable with sitting in judgement. If you’ve lived long enough, you probably have said at one point or another you were glad video and social media wasn’t everywhere when you were young and did stupid things. While nobody liked the behavior, we are a radio station – not in the censorship business. We changed the music on our station last year so it focuses now only on what East Tennessee country fans like. So, this situation is like being between a rock and a hard place. We felt uncomfortable with all the different institutions making decisions for country listeners. We didn’t want to do that at 96.7 Merle. For that reason, we are going to now literally let East Tennessee country listeners vote. If they say no, Morgan’s music stays off 96.7 Merle. If they vote yes, we will play the songs local country listeners want to hear most. That’s the business we are in. We will leave the judgement and punishment to others and it will all be transparent on Facebook.” The station says the Facebook poll should remain in place for at least seven (7) days.
On Tuesday, February 16th at 5 p.m. 96.7 Merle announced the final results and The Morgan Wallen Verdict live on the air. With more than 35,000 votes, 92% of listeners voted to play Morgan Wallen’s popular songs on 96.7 Merle.
Reach Ron Meredith for additional comment here – (865) 457-1380
About 96.7 Merle – We are the only place on radio where you will find your forgotten favorites that other stations simply don’t play anymore and only the new country you love. For a long time Knoxville radio stations seemed to be telling you what you will like. Now we are going to listen to you and play what you crave to hear on the radio all the time. Now you won’t have to swim through a river of songs you don’t know or like to hear a few songs you do like. And we constantly kick off our famous hour long commercial free playlists all day long, every day.
Your Forgotten Favorites & Only The New Country You Love. That’s us. We’re Knoxville’s original 96.7 Merle.