Celebrity / 15-12-2019

Shane MacGowan defends controversial lyric in Pogues' hit Fairytale of New York

For a number of years debate has raged about the use of the word f****t in the 1987 Christmas favourite - and now the writer has addressed the criticism of his festive tune

Shane MacGowan defends controversial lyric in Pogues' hit Fairytale of New York

Shane MacGowan has defended the use of the word f****t in his iconic Christmas favourite Fairytale of New York.

Some radio stations now only play an edited version after complaints about the lyric in the 1987 hit.

One DJ even refused to play the song altogether last year.

Asked about the lyric on Ireland's Late Late Show, MacGowan said: "There is no political correctness to it.

"I've been told it's insulting to gays; I don't understand how that works. Nobody in the band thinks that's worth a second's thought."

He said he doesn't mind if radio bosses edit out certain words and has previously said: "The word was used by the character because it fitted with the way she would speak and with her character.

He says he "doesn't understand" how the lyric can be offensive

“She is not supposed to be a nice person, or even a wholesome person. She is a woman of a certain generation at a certain time in history and she is down on her luck and desperate.”

BBC radio DJ Alex Dyke said last year he would refuse to play the song.

"I hope I'm not going to ruin your Christmas, but I’ve decided that I am no longer comfortable with playing Fairytale of New York by the Pogues and Kirsty MacColl," he said.

“I think Christmas songs should be about excited children, toys, Christmas trees, snowy streets, ski lodges, reindeer, wrapping paper, Santa, family, peace on earth and love.

Some stations will only play the edited version

“I just find the Pogues’ Fairytale of New York a nasty, nasty song.

“I just think that this guy, this toothless drunk, ruining the romantic image of New York city with a song about heroin is not on.

“I don’t like the lyrics 'you’re bum, you’re a punk, you’re a slut on junk' - I think that’s absolutely awful.

“I don’t like 'you scumbag, you maggot, you cheap lousy faggot' – I find that offensive, I find that an offensive pile of down market bilge."



15-12-2019 20:00, source: irishmirror, by James Foster
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