The [email protected] music festival has dropped one of the acts on its bill following concerns over inappropriate lyrics.
Four-piece Ayrshire band, The Rebellions, were booked to play at the town’s event, which takes place from September 7-9.
However, last week the quartet released a tune which supports the far-right activist Stephen Yaxley-Lennon – who operates under the alias “Tommy Robinson”
Hailing him the former leader of the English Defence League (EDL) as a “working class hero”, their song, ‘Tommy Don’t Stop’, also calls the extremist “the bravest man you’ll ever see” and that he “expose the scum”: “If it wasn’t for you, man we’d pretty much be f****d”.
Sharing the new song on Facebook, The Rebellions said: “Tommy Robinson. For many he is a working class hero! For many he is not liked atol.
“Not all will agree with us doing this song but we need to stay true to ourselves!! Peace n love people.”
However, on the [email protected] Facebook page, chairman Colin Sinclair McDermott said that with “deep regret” they had decided to remove the band from the bill.
He said: “The Rebellions are a very talented young local band who have played the festival before and we were delighted to give them the opportunity to open up our main stage on the Saturday night.
“Sadly, due to the nature of one of their latest release we no longer feel it would be appropriate for them to play the festival.”
He added: “[email protected] fully support freedom of speech however we feel the lyrics and meaning behind this song would be detrimental both to our charity, our sponsors and more importantly to you, our supporters.
“I’d like to wish the lads all the very best with their future endeavours. We’ll be announcing their replacement later on today.”
It appears that the band were also dropped from Prestfest in Prestwick, which was due to take place between August 3rd and 5th.
The band’s lead vocalist, who styles himself as “Sydney Rebel”, said: “It’s an absolutely ridiculous decision, and it’s ridiculous that they can put out a comment saying that they support free speech.
“It’s very important that people don’t axe bands just because they say something that they don’t like, it’s only because of who the song is about and that’s not fair.”
Sydney added: “I understand that Tommy Robinson is a controversial figure but everyone is entitled to their own views.
“We are not a political band and we never meant to offend anyone, but we stick by what we said and it will never be deleted.”