97.1/The River ‘boycotts’ ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ until Georgia/Alabama game is over

Lynyrd Skynyrd.

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Lynyrd Skynyrd.

97.1/The River, the local classic rock station, cheekily boycotted one of its core hits “Sweet Home Alabama” until tonight’s college football championship game is concluded.

“We interrupt this entirely inappropriate Lynyrd Skynyrd song, which has been deemed offensive to any red-blooded member of Dawg nation,” the radio station promo intoned. “From now until Monday’s college football national championship rematch between Georgia and Alabama, 97.1/The River will refrain from subjecting Bulldog fans to the song ‘Sweet Home Alabama.’”

The ad jokily notes that “Skynyrd ain’t even from Alabama.” Most of the band hails from Jacksonville, Florida.

“We’ll return to our normal Lynyrd Skynyrd programming after Georgia wins the national championship this Monday night,” the ad noted. The station didn’t say if that would be the case if Alabama won.

The University of Alabama does play the song regularly during sporting events.

The station, which has been Atlanta’s top rock station for many years, ranked No. 1 in December’s Nielsen ratings. It plays mostly rock hits from the late 1960s through the early 1990s and that 1974 Lynyrd Skynyrd classic has been a part of its core playlist since the station launched 16 years ago in early 2006.

Lynyrd Skynyrd was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006. “Sweet Home Alabama” was the band’s only single to crack the pop chart’s top 10, peaking at No. 8.

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