US rap star Tyler, The Creator arrives in London for surprise show four years after he was banned from Britain over lyrics encouraging ‘violence and intolerance’
- The rapper, 29, was banned by then Home Secretary Theresa May in 2015
- His use of homophobic slurs and violent lyrics were cited as the reasons
- It is believed his ban was lifted in February this year but he surprised fans today
- He posted a tweet outside Buckingham Palace and announced a surprise show
Rapper Tyler, The Creator has made a surprise visit to the UK after his ban on entering the country was lifted by the Home Office.
The co-founder of the hip hop collective Odd Future, 29, was barred from entering the UK in 2015 because his lyrics ‘encourages violence and intolerance of homosexuality’ according to then Home Secretary Theresa May.
But today the controversial star, real name Tyler Okonma, posted a picture outside Buckingham Palace, announcing his arrival and the end of his ban.
Rapper Tyler, the Creator posted a picture outside Buckingham Palace today surprising fans who were unaware his UK ban had been lifted
He also said he will be performing a surprise gig at 3pm this afternoon in Peckham.
It is understood the ban, which was due to last for three to five years, was lifted from February 13 and he arrived at Luton Airport in the early hours of this morning.
At the time of the ban, he tweeted: ‘Based on lyrics from 2009 I am not allowed in the UK for three to five years (although I was there eight weeks ago).
‘That is why the shows were cancelled.’
He also believed the ban was racist, saying: ‘They did not like the fact that their children were idolising a black man.’
The rapper was due to perform at the Reading and Leeds festivals that summer but he had to pull out due to the ban.
The rapper has been criticised over his use of homophobic slurs despite speculation over his own sexuality
Then Home Secretary Theresa May enforced the ban which meant Tyler, the Creator could not perform at Leeds and Reading festivals that year
Tyler, the Creator has been criticised over rape and murder fantasies in his lyrics and for using homophobic slurs.
He has previously insisted he is not homophobic, saying: ‘Somebody called me a homophobe. I’m not homophobic. I just say ‘f*****’ and use ‘gay’ as an adjective to describe stupid s***.’
But a Home Office spokesman said in 2015 coming to Britain was a ‘privilege’ and those who did needed to ‘respect our shared values’.
The spokesman said: ‘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.’
Despite the slurs, there has since been speculation over the artist’s sexuality since the release of his fourth studio album Flower Boy in 2017.
In the track I Ain’t Got Time, he rapped: ‘Next line will have ’em like ‘whoa’, I’ve been kissing white boys since 2004.’
Jaden Smith also called Tyler, the Creator his ‘boyfriend’ on stage at a festival in California last year.
Okonma publicly showed his support for fellow Odd Future member Frank Ocean after he came out in 2012.
His fifth studio album, Igor was released yesterday with features from Frank Ocean, Kanye West and Pharrell Williams.
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