Payola 'scandal'

Eliot Spitzer continues his run as the crusading Attorney-General of New York - this time, he sniffs payola:

"Our investigation shows that, contrary to listener expectations that songs are selected for airplay based on artistic merit and popularity, air time is often determined by undisclosed payoffs to radio stations and their employees," Spitzer said.

In one instance in July 2001, Buffalo radio station executive David Universal and a guest were flown to New York City in exchange for his adding the Jennifer Lopez song "I'm Real" to the playlist at WKSE.


In one e-mail, an exec trying to promote the band Audioslave wrote to a radio programmer: "What do I have to do to get Audioslave on WKSS this week?!!? Whatever you can dream up I can make it happen."

(The New York Post)
All well and good, but, as Gawker points out, no one could think "I'm Real" made it to the charts on artistic merit.


That explains why Jessica Simpson's "These Boots Are Made For Walkin'" remake got so much airplay too.
Daryl said…
That was Jessica Simpson? Boy it's awful.

As Adam Green sang on the Jessica EP:

Jessica Simpson, where has your love gone? It's not in your music, no.
You need a vacation, to wake up the cavemen and take them to Mexico.

For some reason, though, I keep singing those lyrics along to the tune of "Eleanor Rigby"
Ahmad said…
Labels paying for airplay is hardly a revelation though.

The most recent example I can think of is Limp Bizkit.
Anonymous said…
What am I missing? Why is everyone surprised that this happens? Because they paid off individual DJs? Could that be it?

That Jessica Simpson video wasn't bad, though...

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