Rina Sawayama Calls Out Behavior Of The 1975’s Matty Healy

In a striking move at the UK’s Glastonbury Festival on June 24th, 2023, acclaimed singer-songwriter Rina Sawayama publicly addressed the recent racial controversy surrounding her labelmate Matty Healy, the lead singer of The 1975.

During her Glastonbury Festival set, Sawayama pointedly referenced the controversial comments made by Healy in recent months, dedicating her song “STFU!” to him. “I wrote this next song because I was sick and tired of these microaggressions. So tonight, this goes out to a white man that watches ‘Ghetto Gaggers’ and mocks Asian people on a podcast. He also owns my masters,” she announced, a clear dig at Healy without mentioning his name.

Watch Rina Sawayama’s comments below

This onstage outcry by Sawayama stems from Healy’s appearance on an episode of The Adam Friedland Show in February. The episode, now removed from Apple and Spotify, featured the hosts making racist jokes about rapper Ice Spice and imitating Chinese and Hawaiian accents in a mocking manner. Notably, Healy participated in these exchanges, leading to widespread criticism.

In response, Healy offered an apology during an April concert in Auckland, New Zealand. His half-hearted apology, in which he confessed to feeling bad about potentially offending people, was largely viewed as inadequate.

Healy’s insensitivity towards racial issues continued in a May interview with The New Yorker, where he dismissed those hurt by his remarks as either “deluded,” “a liar,” or “a bit mental”. Healy’s actions and words have sparked outrage across social media platforms and within the music industry.

Healy held a director role at Dirty Hit, the British indie label that represents both Sawayama and The 1975, until he reportedly stepped down in April.

Rina Sawayama‘s decision to address these racially insensitive incidents highlights the wider issue of accountability in the music industry. Sawayama, who joined Dirty Hit in 2019, has proven that she will not remain silent on such matters. Her song “STFU!”, from her debut album, Sawayama, has become a potent anthem of resistance against racial microaggressions. This recent episode only cements Sawayama‘s stance further and underscores the significant role of music in prompting social change.

Watch Rina Sawayama’s “STFU!” music video below

For more information on Rina Sawayama, visit her website here.

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