Rapper denied UK visa over lyrical content

01 Sep 2015 | Posted by Carl Thomas

A controversial US rapper has cancelled appearances in the UK and Ireland after being denied a UK visa.

Tyler, The Creator had been due to appear at the Reading and Leeds festivals over the Bank Holiday weekend and on a number of other tour dates. But now he claims he has been banned from entering the UK for three to five years because of the lyrics of some of his early songs.

Tyler’s manager Christian Clancy said the Home Office had cited lyrics contained in two albums released when the rapper was a teenager, which the letter said incited violence and intolerance towards homosexuality and “fosters hatred with views that seek to provoke others to terrorist acts”.

Mr Clancy said his client had been to the UK more than 20 times in the last five years without incident, including renting a cinema in London in July for a private showing of a film for his fans.

The Home Office said in a statement: “Coming to the UK is a privilege, and we expect those who come here to respect our shared values. The Home Secretary has the power to exclude an individual if she considers that his or her presence in the UK is not conducive to the public good or if their exclusion is justified on public policy grounds.”

Tyler also cancelled Australian tour dates earlier in the summer after pressure from feminist groups about his lyrics. The Quietus reported that the rapper falsely claimed he had been banned from entering the country after the Australian government was lobbied by groups concerned about the message contained in his music. As a result, groups who had opposed his Australian tour were subjected to online abuse by the rapper’s fans.