On this day in 2001, Clear Channel Communications, which was the biggest owner of radio stations, sent a list of songs to its 1,200 stations asking them not to play for fear of upsetting listeners. Songs related to tragedy, aviation or New York City filled the list.
The list contained 165 songs, including all songs by Rage Against The Machine, seven AC/DC songs, four Alice in Chains songs, Sam Cooke’s ‘Wonderful World’, ‘American Pie’, ‘Stairway To Heaven’ and a lot of Metallica.
In some cases, only certain versions of songs were included on the list. For example, the cover of ‘Smooth Criminal’ by Alien Ant Farm was on the list while the original Michael Jackson recording was not. Similarly, J. Frank Wilson’s version of ‘Last Kiss’ was included, but Pearl Jam’s cover was not.