Slowthai has said that he has “learnt from” the controversy at the 2020 NME Awards and “become a better person” as a result.
The “Nothing Great About Britain” rapper came under fire after making sexual comments towards Katherine Ryan and attempting to fight a fan who labelled him a “misogynist” while accepting the Hero of the Year award during the ceremony.
Slowthai apologised at the time, with Ryan tweeting that she hadn’t been made to feel “uncomfortable” by the incident.
“I didn’t see it as being toxic, but when I watched those clips back, I was like, I can understand why people feel this way and I can understand where I was wrong,” he told Noisey.
Reflecting on the evening, the 25-year-old musician described how he had intended to stay in London after the event, but instead was driven back to Northampton, spending the 70-mile journey reading through tweets as the clip went viral until he deleted the app from his phone.
“A lot of the people who were so quick to speak badly of me were people who, the whole time I’ve been doing well, have stereotyped me. ‘It’s a matter of time ‘til he does something’, you know?” he said. “People see where you’re from, see your kinda characteristics, and label you this bad person.”
The rapper continued: “People are so quick to point the finger and kill ya, but if you live in fear of what everyone thinks, you’ll never do anything all your life… I can sit and wallow or I can take my lessons and learn from it and become a better person.”
Ryan also spoke about the incident earlier this month, explaining that most of the backlash she had received at the time had been from other women.
“It didn’t bother me but it was very difficult to watch as a feminist,” the stand-up comedian said. “But I think unfortunately some of our worst enemies are other feminists.
“There is a group that direct a lot of criticism inward and they pick apart your feminism versus their feminism, whereas if we all united, we’d be in a better position. I had mostly women cross [at me] because I’d not denounced the events at the NME Awards.”