The hit song “Pumped Up Kicks,” by Foster the People, won’t be playing on the radio very often following the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary last week. The alt rock single is being pulled from various stations across the United States.
Los Angeles' top music station KIIS-FM has taken the song out of circulation, according to TMZ. The tabloid publication says the decision to nix the song is a direct result of the tragic events in Newtown, Conn.
“All the other kids with the pumped up kicks / You better run, better run, outrun my gun,” the band sings in the song’s chorus. “All the other kids with the pumped up kicks / You better run, better run, faster than my bullet."
The band has addressed the violent content of the song in the past, explaining that the tune was written to raise awareness about gun violence, not to promote it. The band’s bassist, Cubbie Fink, has a close connection with gun violence after his cousin survived the Columbine High School Massacre in 1999.
"She was actually in the library when everything went down, so I actually flew out to be with her the day after it happened and experienced the trauma surrounding it and saw how affected she was by it,” Fink said about his cousin, who lived through the shooting at Columbine, in an interview for CNN. “She is as close as a sister, so obviously, it affected me deeply. So to be able to have a song to create a platform to talk about this stuff has been good for us."
The band has made efforts since the Dec. 14 incident to encourage fans to donate to charities supporting victims and their families, and to promote gun control.
"Between 2001-present over 270,000 people have been killed in the US from a gun. It's time to reform the laws,” the band tweeted.
"There needs to be real change if we are going to evolve into a better society. It starts with a loud booming unified voice of common sense.
— Foster The People (@fosterthepeople) December 19, 2012
Another musician, Ke$ha, has also has a song removed from radio playlists since the mass shooting. The pop star has taken to Twitter to apologize for her song, “Die Young.”
"I'm so so so sorry for anyone who has been effected by this tragedy.and I understand why my song is now inappropriate. words cannot express.
— ke$ha(@keshasuxx) December 19, 2012