Rapper Tyler the Creator ‘banned from UK’ over anti-gay lyrics
Rapper ‘Tyler, the Creator’ has claimed that he was denied entry to the UK because of his homophobic lyrics.
The rapper – whose real name is Tyler Okonma, was denied entry to the UK this week despite having a tour planned.
A controversial figure, he was branded “violently anti-gay”. by media charity GLAAD in 2011, for using slurs such as “faggot” in lyrics, as well as references to rape and domestic violence.
The rapper later claimed he “personally don’t give a shit” if people think he is homophobic, claiming: “I just say faggot and use gay as an adjective to describe stupid shit”. He has since moved away from his earlier material – though he has never apologised – welcoming out rapper Frank Ocean.
However, the rapper – who was forced to cancel an appearance at Reading and Leeds festivals, as well as four tour dates across the UK and Ireland – claims he was banned from entering the country “BASED ON LYRICS FROM 2009”.
He ranted: “BASED ON LYRICS FROM 2009 I AM NOT ALLOWED IN THE UK FOR 3-5 YEARS ( although i was there 8 weeks ago) THAT IS WHY THE SHOWS WERE CANCELLED.”
His manager Christian Clancy added in a Tumblr blog post: “Tyler has been banned from entering the UK for somewhere between 3 to 5 years per a letter from the Secretary of State for the Home [Office] of the United Kingdom.
The letter specifically cites lyrics he wrote 6-7 years ago for his albums bastard and goblin – the type of lyrics he hasn’t written since. Highlights from the letter include that his work ‘encourages violence and intolerance of homosexuality’ and ‘fosters hatred with views that seek to provoke others to terrorist acts’.
Clancy continued: “To say that I am confused would be an understatement. Can you imagine being beholden to things you said when you were 18?
“Tyler has been to the UK over 20 times in the last five years without incident (shows, in-stores, meet and greets). We rented out a movie theatre last month in London for a private showing of Napoleon Dynamite for his fans literally last month.”
He continues: “More importantly, this is a broader issue of free speech, with new lines being drawn that include reaching back in time without acknowledging growth.”
“I’m not defending his OLD lyrics. To be honest they make me cringe, but I stand beside him because of who he actually IS.”