Howard Stern has, in his own way, extended a partial apology to Sam Smith after last week calling him “ugly”, “fat” and “gay”, during a radio talk show.

America’s Got Talent judge Howard Stern last week claimed that singer Sam Smith is an “ugly motherf***er” who “looks gay” The controversial TV personality made the comments on his SiriusXM radio show,

This week, speaking to celebrityradio.biz, of the comments he said: “Some reporter got ahold of it – they listened to the show like it’s gospel. I felt bad because that’s so not what I was saying but you know what, who cares. The fact that the press cares what I have to say shows how ridiculously talented and hot I am in . Who would even write an article about it? I guess I’m complimented in a way. I hope Sa Smith gets worried about what I really said.

“By the way, he is gay, and he is chubby… It was meant as a compliment.. he’s not cute like Taylor Swift is cute, and yet he beat the odds. I was kind of congratulating him, but I guess it didn’t come out that way.”

Stern then appeared to reach out to Smith to offer an apology, before changing his mind, saying: “If anyone can get word to him… actually who cares. He doesn’t need me. Just ignore me – believe me.”

He went on: “He’s very thin, and he’s hot and he’s manly. By the way, calling someone gay when they’s gay is not an insult. There are so many homophobes and gay haters out there, that it’s a miracle that anyone can be openly gay and get any kind of traction… whatever.. I don’t care.

“When I see those articles, I think ‘I’m more important than the President’… If I say someone is fat and gay… it made more news than anything I’ve ever done.”

He then repeated: “He looks chubby to me….

“I meant it as a compliment… aren’t you gay… and couldn’t you lose a few [pounds]”

“He’s not like a pretty boy – he’s an ugly guy like me. Most of the world is ugly. That’s why supermodels get paid so much.

“I happen to think Sam Smith is very talented. I think he beat the odds. I don’t think he looks like a Hollywood pretty boy. Good for him, he beat the odds.”

Joking that he only knew one of Smith’s hit songs, after being informed that he has had at least two in the US by the host, Stern asked: “Did Tom Petty write it?” referring to a recent ruling that Smith had to list Petty as a co-writer on ‘Stay With Me’.

Smith settled out of court in October, but the terms of the settlement have just become available.

Similarities were noted between ‘Stay With Me’, and the Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers 1989 hit ‘I Won’t Back Down’. Smith has agreed to pay a 12.5% writing credit to Petty, and the singer-composer Jeff Lynne.

Smith had appeared to respond to the original comments earlier this week, tweeting: “Can’t believe what I’ve just read”, followed by “ignore”.