Posted in music on July 31, 2008

Johnny Rotten

Speaking to the BBC's One Show about racial attitudes, Lydon said: "My grandchildren are Jamaican right."

"This is an absolute offence to them and me when I read stories like that, that are allowed to go to print absolutely unfounded and have the liberty to take liberties with a man like me and call me a racist when my entire life has proved exactly the opposite." When asked if he was a racist, Lydon replied: "Absolutely not. And any bugger that dares say so is going to have their day in court with me - you understand this?"

During his interview, Lydon also reaffirmed comments made in his initial response to Okereke's allegations that stressed the Sex Pistols' multi-racial appeal.

"It's the most wonderful thing ever, playing to our multi-racial audiences, which they always have been," he said. "And not only that, multi-gender, multi-everything-you-like, we are open to all. Our whole message in life has been to eliminate the barriers that separate us."

He added that the Sex Pistols "only true enemy in life is governments". "And politicians, and, low and behold, the British press," he added. [GigWise]

PREVIOUSLY: three Foals injured in Sex Pistols-Bloc Party fight



Comments (36)

for a guy who hates the press, he sure does seek them out a lot.

Posted by beast | July 31, 2008 9:33 AM

I miss the days of Dan Vivian & The Girls.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 9:45 AM

"Absolutely not. And any bugger that dares say so is going to have their day in court with me - you understand this?"

LOL! Threatening litigation is soooooooooo punk.

Posted by dudley dawson | July 31, 2008 9:48 AM

Does anyone remember the title of Lydon's autobiography? Brownie points to the first correct answer.

Posted by Brian F. | July 31, 2008 9:49 AM

Yeah it's bullshit just because some douchebag in his entourage says something kinda racist doesn't mean he should be called out like that.

Posted by the truth | July 31, 2008 9:57 AM

"My grandchildren are Jamaican right."

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:00 AM

lydon's autobiography -

'no irish, no blacks, no dogs'

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:24 AM

Unfortunately, the interviewer neglected to ask him why he's an arsehole.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:31 AM

title of his book has been covered in previous posts. It is not a racist title. Do some research before you post stuff like that that has been already covered and put to bed.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:35 AM

he's a twat but you know what, sex pistols and early pil were amazing so he deserves it.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:41 AM

"Unfortunately, the interviewer neglected to ask him why he's an arsehole."

Obvious, isn't it? He's full of self-loathing. You don't treat people the way he often does and actually like yourself.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:47 AM

Denying you are racist on brit tv is alot like denying being gay on BRAVO.

Posted by peter swimm | July 31, 2008 10:53 AM

did anyone go to the she & him show the other night, and they did take a god dang pictures!!!

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:56 AM

To shay.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 10:56 AM

'Denying you are racist on brit tv is alot like denying being gay on BRAVO.'

why's that? i want to laugh and say 'ah i get it' but i don't really...get it.

He's an ugly fucker. yannis and kele are not. that tells me who's side i'm on already.

Posted by i am shallow or something | July 31, 2008 11:08 AM

my understanding was that it was a homophobic attack and not a racial one, i think the sex pistols publicist is smart to have spun that it was racist incident, now hopefully noone brings up his homophobia

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 11:10 AM

Johnny R. your days are done every see's you as a racist, when all Kele wanted to do was ask about your LIMITED band. Unfortunetly, your entourage appears to reflect you, and your entourage appears to be racist, some effect you've rubbed off of them. You also got the FOALS beat up, and band managers witnessed the damn thing, just say sorry already you fuck.

-from an american 20 year old half white/half filipino

Posted by ARTISSEXUAL | July 31, 2008 11:13 AM

Yannis is gay right? I love Yannis so much. If he's gay we can still be best friends. If he's gay with Kele that would be cute. johnny rotten is jealous of their smart good looks and youth. always jealous of the youth.

Posted by yannis fangirl | July 31, 2008 11:14 AM

All of a sudden he's John Lydon now. Whenever bad shit happens to you all nicknames are thrown out.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 11:19 AM

they make you take off your makeup for mugshots!

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 11:21 AM

I have no idea what has happened to youth culture. You all seem so mean, back biting and completely ignorant. It breaks my heart to see how quick you throw blame and attack on any easy target like right wing conservatives. The enemy is the Governments, the media and corporations that take away our rights and sell us garbage. The Sex Pistols are and were a great band, they played along side with The Clash. Both bands are known to be popular in England among the mixed Punk-Reggae scene of the late 70's. They were certainly not skinheads. John Lydon is no more angry and reactionary than Frank Black, who has been known to flip the fuck out any time anyone mentioned The PIxies. This whole ordeal has been blown out of proportion by the media and witch hunters to lazy to do any research.
I know very well, I will be attacked immediately after I post this. But I really mean it. I love music, I love youth culture and want to hope for a better future than one of fear and faceless bloggers with a new found sense of false strength. At least use the strength for good.
Said my piece, now let your hypocritical bullets fly...

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 11:42 AM

Being part of a music scene that has an association with reggae music does not clear someone of being a racist. I'm just saying is all. I personally don't think he is and I think this whole thing is just blown way out of proportion. Kele might have been acting like a dickhead(or at least coming across as one) and things got heated. Johnny shouldn't be branded a racist just because some idiot he was with said something ignorant.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 11:56 AM

11:42 is jealous of our youth! our young, wrinkle-free faces! our high tolerance for drugs and alcohol! our soft skin...

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 12:00 PM

my gadar tells me that Yannis is not gay. but i think Kele is definitely.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 12:06 PM

true story, i've never given have a shit about the sex pistols. they didn't revolutionize nothing. they were contemporaries of superior others. tell this guy to shut up.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 12:14 PM

The title of Johnny Lydon's biography "No Irish, No Blacks No Dogs" refers to the racism of the 50's and early 60's in London. This was a slogan and sign on many offices, public places and pubs, much like the segregation in the US. Lydon's family were poor Irish-Catholic immigrants who were considered a blight on England. The Sex Pistols were anti-nationalist, hence the slogan Anarchy in the UK. Nationalists hated them. Skin heads hated all immigrants including the Irish.The Skin heads were, for the most part, nationalists. Johnny Lydon considered himself lower class and outside all of hypocritical English society. He hated the class systems and was sympathetic to Black movement in the Uk of the 70's.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 12:22 PM

Talking about your grandchildren is so punk.

Especially when they are from his wife's daughter from a different marriage.So he doesn't have to play punk grampa.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 12:59 PM

What smells?

Posted by 2B | July 31, 2008 2:01 PM

Can't we all just agree that at this point in time all parties involved, Kele, Lydon, Yannis, the Fouls, are a bunch of no talent ass clowns who should be trying to make some decent music instead of being involved in pointless tickle fight. Agreed!

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 2:50 PM

no we can't all agree because you're an asshole and you're also wrong.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 2:58 PM

what does ari up think about this?

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 3:13 PM

Really old dude at the Chelsea Hotel once told me the lot of them, the sex pistols, Lydon included, were a bunch of pansies. And then he took a bite of an egg salad sandwich, with an expression of what I took as looking like he was thinking: "I use to kick some major ass back in the day, but now, not so much."

Posted by Theo D | July 31, 2008 3:22 PM

Youre just a pile of shit
Youre coming to this
You poor little faggot
Youre sealed with a kiss

Still out on those pills
Cheap thrills anadins
Aspros anything youre condemned
To eternal bullshit
Youre sealed with a kiss
Kiss me

Wish one of NYC's original punks would already kiss him.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2008 4:01 PM

He IS a racist as this interview clearly proves.

Posted by Helen | August 15, 2008 12:02 AM

"He IS a racist as this interview clearly proves."

What? You're joking, right??? That interview contains nothing remotely resembling racism. He's talking about the differences among cultures in three or four different countries; he's not talking about race at all, and plus he was just being funny.


I've never met the man personally, but I know enough about him to know that there is no way he's a racist.

The first three PIL albums represent some of the most important and enduring music ever made. Lydon invented a new way of communicating in music and culture, he helped millions of kids liberate themselves from bland, mindless conformity, and his influence continues on the basis of his best work to this day.

True, he hasn't made much of an impact lately, but let's cut the man some slack: he's a fucking hero.

Posted by pl | November 1, 2008 5:52 PM

There are a lot of people here who don't even know the influence Lydon's music has had on others - as well as being famously 'not racist'!!

What have Bloc Party ever done? Just boring student music? Apparently this guy marches up to Lydon backstage and asks him if PiL are getting back together - no hello, no introduction etc.

If you ask me that is weird. From what I know, the security asked him to go and he refused and a scuffle broke out. One of the SECURITY people accused the bloc party guy of having a 'black attitude' and this has been tactlessly attributed to Lydon by the press and Bloc Party.

And it's interesting he brought it up again now they are promoting a tour.

What a tosser!

Punk = no rules, so don't slate Lydon for doing something you think he shouldn't.

Posted by Mr.Sensible | November 19, 2008 8:07 PM

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