- 24 Apr 23
The apology comes as The 1975 prepare for the Japanese leg of their At Their Very Best tour.
During the podcast, which has since been removed from Spotify and Apple; Healy, Friedland, and co-host Nick Mullen made a slew of derogatory comments about the rapper’s body and speculated ethnicity, mocking her imagined accent through a series of racially charged jokes.
“I just feel a bit bad, and I’m kind of a bit sorry if I’ve offended you,” Healy told the crowd at his recent Auckland show, months after the podcast was released. “Ice Spice, I’m sorry. It’s not because I’m annoyed that me joking got misconstrued. It’s because I don’t want Ice Spice to think I’m a dick. I love you, Ice Spice. I’m so sorry.”
— Coup De Main (@coupdemain) April 21, 2023
While perhaps not at the helm of the derogatory comments, Healy egged on Friedland and Mullen as they imitated Chinese, Japanese and Hawaiian accents during the podcast, with Mullen going so far as to call the rapper an “Inuit Spice Girl” and a “chubby Chinese lady."
"Yeah, that’s what Ice Spice is like,” said Healy– 11 years the rapper's senior– when the hosts mocked her accent.
Mullen and Friedland also encouraged Healy to contact Ice Spice on Instagram and ask "‘What are you? A fucking Eskimo or something?"
The three also did a segment on how the LGBTQ+ community perceives queer-baiting, where Healy claimed "the gays" weren't actually bothered by the phenomenon.
"Gay men don't have problem with someone to pretending to be gay, they just jack-off to it," responded one of the hosts.
If Healy acknowledged these remarks during the 1975's Auckland performance, it was in a broad, catch-all, apology.
“The truth is, I see a sign that says like, ‘Matty, I hope you’re okay.’ I feel a bit bad, to be honest, because I feel like I’ve been a bit irresponsible,” he told the audience. “It’s very well for me to say, I don’t understand how famous I am. I don’t like being famous. But reality is reality. And I think that I’ve said some things or kind of, I make a joke out of everything. That’s my thing. And I can take it too far sometimes in front of too many people. And I feel a bit embarrassed. So that’s the truth.”
He then added: “I’m making jokes about shit because because if I don’t, then I have to be really sincere and I don’t like doing that. And, I know that this is a paradox, but this is really freaking me out and I feel like I need to do this. If this is part of the story, I’m a little bit sorry about shit that I’ve said, sometimes. I never meant to hurt anybody.”
After the Adam Friedland Show podcast episode aired, UK-based society of East and Southeast Asian musicians, Every Sound Every Action Music, condemned Healy’s “flagrant racism and complicity," in a statement, noting Healy's previous position as a director at Dirty Hit Ltd., the company that owns the 1975’s label home, Dirty Hit.
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Several artists of Asian descent are signed to the label, including American singer-songwriter Wallice, who is currently supporting the 1975 during their At Their Very Best tour.
English artist Yungblud also condemned Healy's words. “[L]ove listening to three privileged white dudes sit around and objectify a young black female artist who’s blowing up,” he wrote to his Twitter account. “[w]elcome to your 30’s I guess…”
In response, Matty Healy posted a video to his Instagram Story, apparently mocking the singer’s activism with the word "emo" written across his face.
love listening to three privileged white dudes sit around and objectify a young black female artist who’s blowing up. welcome to your 30’s i guess …
— YUNGBLUD (@yungblud) February 11, 2023
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