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By Andy Malt | Posted on Thursday, June 30, 2022
Disgruntled staff at a Canadian radio station took over the airwaves and played Rage Against The Machine’s “Killing In The Name” on repeat for several hours yesterday. The move was apparently a protest after management fired a number of presenters.
The hosts of the morning show on Vancouver’s Kiss Radio 104.9FM, Kevin Lim and Sonia Sidhu, announced their departure on Tuesday, saying in a statement: “Kiss is changing and unfortunately we have been informed that we will not be part of this new chapter. Although it comes with mixed emotions, we want to express an overwhelming feeling: gratitude.”
Later the same day, afternoon host Tara Jean Stevens also announced that she was leaving the station, saying, “A special announcement! I officially enjoyed my last show on Kiss Radio”.
The next morning, apparently at 6 a.m., the station began looping “Killing In The Name”, slightly crude, uncensored. A man who only gave his name as Apollo occasionally interrupted the show, pausing to accept listener song requests, which were then ignored in favor of the track resuming playback Rage Against The Machine.
‘Apollo’ later told the Guardian the song was already playing on a loop when he arrived at the station yesterday morning, but he admitted that continuing it could get him in trouble with his bosses.
After twelve hours, control was regained and the station began broadcasting its usual playlist. But will this be his “usual” playlist for long? While many celebrated the big protest, others speculated that it was actually a set-up to herald the station’s switch from pop to alternative rock. If so, there has been no confirmation of this so far.
“Killing In The Name”, of course, was originally written to promote police brutality. In 2009, it was used to protest ‘X Factor’ winners who always made it to number one on Christmas. Now it’s used to protest the firing of radio presenters, or maybe just for fun. So you could say it has lost some of its power over the past 30 years.