Belfast Telegraph

Tyler, The Creator: UK, why ban me?

Tyler, The Creator doesn't understand why his raps are frowned upon when authors penning tales about raped and murdered aren't criticised.

The American rapper was turned away last week after arriving to play a series of festivals, including the recent Reading and Leeds. In a post on Twitter he explained he was barred by home secretary, Theresa May, because of lyrics he wrote in 2009 and the star has now spoken about the incident in more detail.

"Monday was one of the sh**tiest days I've ever had. I was in a detention room; I felt like a criminal. And then [a Border Force officer] showed me lyrics from songs... literally, a paper with five lines of lyrics, and four were from [mixtape] B*****d songs and one was from [song] Tron Cat. I never perform those songs," he sighed to British newspaper The Guardian.

"30 minutes later, the guy comes in, he gives me a paper, and he says: 'OK, they're not letting you in the country.' The paper said I couldn't come at all, saying that I support homophobia and acts of terrorism, and [it said] some other stuff. I'm just like, one, none of that is true, and two, I was here seven weeks ago. I rented out a movie theatre for a show. I did something really awesome, and it was no problem."

What really irked Tyler was that those who researched the tracks were aware that he wrote them from the perspective of an alter ego. The musician insists he's nothing like his persona in raps, which document subjects like murder and rape, in real life and that he wouldn't hurt a fly.

This isn't the first time Tyler has had issues entering a country: last year he was forbidden from going into New Zealand and accused of posing "a threat to the public order and the public interest". Issues with B*****d and Tron Cat were initially raised by an Australian feminist group called Collective Shout earlier this year, as they were determined to keep him from entering Australia.

Tyler is confused about why rap music is so censored when other creative outlets aren't.

"What about the people who will make music in the next five years? Are they gonna get banned? Why don't they ban authors? Writers who write these mystery books about people getting raped and sabotaged and murdered and brainwashed - why don't they ban them?" he mused.

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From Belfast Telegraph