Radio Stations Drop Ryan Adams Music Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations

Ryan Adams performs at the Marriott Rewards and Universal Music Present Music is Universal during the South by Southwest Music Festival at JW Marriott Austin on Wednesday, March 16, 2016, in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Barry Brecheisen/Invision/AP)
Barry Brecheisen/Invision/AP

Radio stations around the country are dropping music from Grammy-nominated rock star Ryan Adams following a series of allegations of sexual misconduct against him, including inappropriate contact with a minor, Variety reports.

Last week, the FBI opened an inquiry into his supposed relationship with a 14-year-old girl, after The New York Times published a bombshell report detailing the contents of that relationship as well as allegations of psychological abuse by his ex-wife, actress Mandy Moore, and sexual misconduct by another six women.

Adams’ most recent single, “Fuck the Rain,” had been achieving reasonable success, having reached number 20 on Billboard’s Adult Alternative chart. However, many stations have now dropped his music, presumably amid fears of a backlash.

“Stations are quietly dropping him from their playlists,” John Schoenberger, the editor at radio trade website All Access, told Variety. “They’re not making any public statements because of the legal ramifications.”

“We were playing it, but no more,” said Jeff Penfield, assistant program director and director of digital integration at the Sky Daniels-led KCSN, told the entertainment outlet. “Our station is all about encouraging and helping develop artists.”

“Aside from all the terrible ways he was treating women, add on the fact he was keeping them from having successful careers,” he continued. “That just speaks to who we are as a station in supporting musicians. If he has made them feel so bad about themselves that they don’t feel like performing or creating music, that just runs counter to who we are.”

Gary Kraen, VP of operations and programming at WRLT Lightning 100 in Nashville, also confirmed they were “slowing down” on his back catalog, while DJ’s would refrain from announcing his name on air.

“We’re slowing down on his back catalog,” he explained. “But we’re putting off making any major changes until we get more information. Right now, I can’t let my jocks front- or back-announce a Ryan Adams track, and we will monitor any listener backlash.”

Meanwhile, Adams, who is often vulgar toward President Donald Trump, has vehemently denied all the allegations, accusing the Times of painting an “upsettingly inaccurate” version of events.

“Some of its details are misrepresented; some are exaggerated; some are outright false,” he said last week. “I would never have inappropriate interactions with someone I thought was underage. Period.”

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