From Sea To Shining Sea, FM Radio Salutes America

A s previously reported, following the news that U.S. forces had killed Osama Bin Laden yesterday, many New York FM radio shows this morning (May 2) reacted by airing pro-American music and commentary.

Across the country, other stations in a variety of formats have joined the wave of patriotic programming.

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Top 40 KIIS (102.7)/Los Angeles morning host Ryan Seacrest played Ray Charles' "America the Beautiful" in the 6 and 8 a.m. hours, according to Nielsen BDS.

Fellow pop outlet WKQI (95.5)/Detroit played Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the U.S.A." twice and added a touch of local swagger: a spin in the 6 a.m. hour for "American Bad Ass" by Michigan native Kid Rock.

Top 40 WHKF (99.3 Kiss FM)/Harrisburg, Pa., even veered off format by playing, in addition to Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A." in the 8 a.m. hour, country superstar Toby Keith's "Courtesy of the Red, White & Blue (The Angry American)."

Country radio has especially, and unsurprisingly, increased airplay of patriotic-themed songs today, with such fare common in the genre to begin with.

WMZQ (98.7)/Washington, D.C., along with morning drive spins for Greenwood and Keith's tracks, kicked off the 5 a.m. hour with Kellie Coffey's version of the national anthem.

In San Diego, where Naval Base San Diego is the largest base of the U.S. Navy on the west coast, country signal KSON (97.3) began the 8 a.m. hour with the Band Perry's take on "The Star Spangled Banner."

Country WXTU (92.5)/Philadelphia is "playing three patriotic songs an hour all day," says program director Shelly Easton. "We are running special imaging all day and we suspended all contesting for the day.

"May is 'Military May' for WXTU, so we had already planned to work with Liberty USO all month to collect supplies for troops during all our appearances.

"We had the president of the USO on with us this morning to discuss last night's events," adds Easton. "Deborah Norville and other special guests joined us with their reactions, as well."

As "listeners are calling in and sharing their thoughts and feelings," according to Easton, WXTU's pro-USA programming today has included Alan Jackson's "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)"; Keith's "American Soldier"; Daryl Worley's "Have You Forgotten"; Billy Ray Cyrus' "Some Gave All"; David Ball's "Riding With Private Malone"; and, Aaron Tippin's "Where the Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly."

"We plan to hold an on-air ' 'XTU Supports Our Troops Pep Rally' tonight from 6 to 7 featuring all patriotic music and thoughts from our listeners," says Easton. "We hope to provide a platform to share this historic event with our community and show our support of our military and military families in the Delaware Valley.

"We are taking this opportunity to salute our brave servicemen and women for their continued sacrifice and service to our nation."