Monday 23 September 2019

Stormzy apologises to Skunk Anansie for Glastonbury error

The Grime star, who wowed crowds on Friday, claimed he was the first black British artist to top the bill at the festival.

Stormzy performing on the Pyramid Stage (Aaron Chown/PA)
Stormzy performing on the Pyramid Stage (Aaron Chown/PA)

By Kerri-Ann Roper, PA Entertainment Editor

Grime star Stormzy has apologised to Skunk Anansie for erroneously saying he was the first black British artist to headline Glastonbury.

The Croydon-born star tweeted the claim ahead of his Friday night slot on the Pyramid Stage.

Stormzy performing on the Pyramid Stage (Aaron Chown/PA)

He added: “At 25 years old, I am the second youngest solo act to ever headline Glastonbury, the youngest being a 24-year-old David Bowie in 1971.

“I’m overwhelmed with emotions. This is the most surreal feeling I’ve ever experienced. I feel my entire life has led to this moment.”

Stormzy, real name Michael Omari, apologised to Skin, the lead singer of Skunk Anansie, in a tweet on Monday.

He tweeted: “Skin from the band Skunk Anansie was actually the first black artist to headline glasto she done it with her band in 1999 no disrespect intended and MASSIVE salute to you – my apologies! @skinskinny”.

Stormzy also included a heart emoji at the end of his message.

Skin, real name Deborah Anne Dyer, rebutted his claims in an Instagram post at the weekend.

She wrote: “Sorry Stormzy but we beat you to it in 1999! 20 years ago! And while we’re on topic, I was the first black Woman too! @beyonce Wishing you an awesome nite tho, Kill it! You’re amazing and we’re all very proud. ps. Real question is why it took 20 years! ”

Skin, the lead singer from the band Skunk Anansie, performing on stage during the 1999 Glastonbury Festival (PA)

Stormzy replied to her post on Instagram writing: “No disrespect intended I’m very sorry my apologies! Thank you for paving the way – love & respect.”

According to the band’s official biography, just a year after they had formed, in 1995, they made their Glastonbury debut on one of the smaller stages and then in 1999 were a headline act on the Pyramid Stage.

Other headline acts that year included American rock band R.E.M. and Welsh band Manic Street Preachers.

Singer Beverley Knight was among the stars praising Skin for the way she had handled the situation, with Knight writing on Instagram: “So much GRACE and TRUTH in this comment. Yes sis!”

Skunk Anansie’s hits include Hedonism (Just Because You Feel Good), Brazen (Weep) and Weak.

The band are currently on tour in Europe and the UK.

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