Reggae star Beenie Man has been dumped from Raggamuffin. His only promotional interview was with Grant Smithies, where he claimed he was a changed man and should be welcomed in New Zealand.
History has repeated itself for Beenie Man, the controversial artist has been yanked from the Raggamuffin Music Festival’s line-up after protests by New Zealand’s gay community and has been replaced with lesbian singer Diana King, Hype Life Magazine understands.
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Organisers recently pulled the Grammy-winning musician from Auckland’s Raggamuffin line-up after an outcry from Gay New Zealand over his “continued homophobic attitude”.
Beenie Man denied he was homophobic or wrote homophobic lyrics but then hung up the phone just seconds into a 15-minute interview about the topic, GayNZ.com reported, an incident which contributed to his performance being pulled.
Beenie Man had been asked to publicly state his support of the gay community and retract his past lyrics, but failed to do so, organisers said.
According to stuff.co.nz Beenie Man in a promotional interview with Grant Grant Smithies, claimed he was a changed man and should be welcomed in New Zealand.
When asked if he still sparks occassional boycotts around the world due to the homophobic lyrics of his early songs, the deejay reportedly insisted, “No, no, that all OK now”
“A lot of dem songs were actually directed between (fellow Jamaican deejay) Bounty Killer and I. They were fighting lyrics between two angry man. We throw sharp word at one another, but I never intend my words to hurt another man.”
“Most of these songs people complain over, I write 20 years ago! It is time to move on with life. I went out and talk to some of the people protesting, and I admit some of these songs were wrong. I hope them now let me do me job. This time, I get to New Zealand at last. Me coming, now- the King of Dancehall! It’s on! This time, me in the door!”
Back in 2012, Beenie Man released a video apologizing to the gay community for his past anti gay lyrics. Seems that apology was not accepted.
“Do not fight against me for some songs I did 20 years ago,” Beenie pleads.
“There is no one in this world is the same as they were 20 years ago, I know I am not. I was a kid and I come from Waterhouse, which is a small community. I never know what the world is like and what the world is all about. But now I know that people live in this world that live their life differently from my life. I still have to respect and love human beings.”
Other artists on the Raggamuffin bill include The Game, Macy Gray, Xzibit and Eddie Grant.
Beenie Man’s scheduled 2010 appearance at the Big Day Out was pulled after similar protests, including a Facebook page demanding he not perform.
Beenie Man is currently on his Unstoppable Tour of Europe, which started November 19 and is slated to end on December 15. Unstoppable is the name of his 20th studio album, scheduled to be released next month.