Tyler, the Creator recently revealed that he has been banned from the United Kingdom for three to five years due to the nature of his lyrics. The “DEATHCAMP” rapper usually resorts to his Twitter feed with his feelings but this time he has opened up about the ban from the country with UK outlet The Guardian.
“I felt like a criminal,” he said when discussing what happened when he arrived at the UK border. “And then [a Border Force officer] showed me lyrics from songs … literally, a paper with five lines of lyrics, and four were from Bastard songs and one was from Tron Cat. I never perform those songs. Thirty 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. ”
The letter read:
“The home secretary has considered whether, in light of this list, you should be excluded from the UK on the grounds that your presence here would not be conducive to the public good,” the letter to the performer stated. “The home secretary has reached this decision because you have brought yourself within the scope of the list of unacceptable behaviour by making statements that may foster hatred, which might lead to intercommunity violence in the UK.”…Your albums. Bastard, in 2009, and Goblin, in 2011, are based on the premise of your adopting a mentally unstable alter ego who describes violent physical abuse, rape and murder in graphic terms which appears to glamourise this behaviour.”
“Now I’m getting treated like a terrorist,” he continued. “I’m bummed out because it’s like, dude, I’m not homophobic. I’ve said this since the beginning. The “hating women” thing – it’s so nuts.”
Tyler went on to question why he would be banned if it is clearly understood that he was rapping on behalf of his alter ego or the perspective of someone else.
“The thing that irks me about it is that the paper saying I am denied entry to the UK clearly states that these songs were written from [the perspective of] an alter ego – which means they obviously did some research on these songs that they’re detaining me for.”
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One of the songs responsible for him being banned, “Blow,” was written from the perspective of serial killer Ted Bundy, he says.
Tyler was also unable to tour in Australia thanks to the efforts of a feminist group, Collective Shout,to halt the approval of his visa.
“They’re following!,” he said about Collective Shout. “They’re just followers at this point – to me, at least. Personally. I don’t know. It all came out of nowhere; I was [in London] in May, dude. Two months later they’re like: ‘Hey, uh, yeah, we reviewed music from a long time ago out of nowhere, [and] you can’t come in.’What?”
Read the full interview here.