Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Radio Disney is shutting down

Walk away, Mouse.
Walk away, Mouse.
Photo: Maja Hitij (Getty Images)

Radio Disney, the long-running radio outlet that helped launch and boost the careers of Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, and other Disney Channel stars-turned-pop-idols, is soon to be no more. Per The Hollywood Reporter, both Radio Disney, and its country music incarnation Radio Disney Country, have been slated for dismantling as part of efforts to restructure some of the company’s leviathan assets—an effort that’s seen a considerable number of executives and employees at the company already get the axe.

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The reasons behind the decision don’t seem especially complicated: It’s 2020, the live music industry is in a big ol’ toilet labeled “COVID-19,” and terrestrial radio has fallen by the wayside. Disney already did a massive consolidation of its radio brands in 2014, when it sold off 22 of its 23 Radio Disney stations, holding on only to Los Angeles’ KRDC-AM and switching over to satellite and digital distribution. (Radio Disney Country launched the following year, presumably as part of this new strategic approach.) This final move will kill off another 36 jobs, ending the reign of Radio Disney at last.

For the unfamiliar, Radio Disney was largely teen-focused, promoting whatever the hottest young acts of the day were—and if they happened to be products of the Disney talent development machine, so much the better. The channel began broadcasting in 1996, and will air its final broadcast in the first quarter of 2021.