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Last Updated: Saturday, 6 December, 2003, 21:45 GMT
Reggae gig axed after gay protest
Peter Tatchell
Peter Tatchell's Outrage! wants legal action on homophobic lyrics
A Jamaican reggae star has cancelled a UK concert after gay rights activists demanded he face criminal charges, saying he incites homophobic violence.

OutRage! urged Scotland Yard's hate crime unit to investigate lyrics in four songs by Bounty Killer.

The performer's promoter said the decision to cancel the gig at the Rex club in Stratford, east London, had nothing to do with the protest.

But OutRage! spokesman Peter Tatchell said the star had "chickened out".

Bounty killer... is terrified of facing a gay rights protest. His macho bravado is in ruins
Peter Tatchell

"This is a fantastic victory over homophobia," he said.

"Bounty Killer has chickened out and dared not show his face. He knows what he is doing is wrong, and he is terrified of facing a gay rights protest. His macho bravado is in ruins."

Sheldon Atkinson, events manager at the Rex club, said Bounty Killer - real name Rodney Price - had cancelled because he had missed his flight from Jamaica.

He had cancelled his concert at the White Pearl Club in Bordesley, Birmingham, on Friday night for the same reason, Mr Atkinson said.

He added that when the event looked set to go ahead, police had said they would talk to the star and warn him to "keep his lyrical content down".

The club was trying to reschedule the concert, he said.

Four songs

In a letter to Scotland Yard, Mr Tatchell had called for the singer to be arrested on charges of inciting the assault and murder of gay people, and/or on charges of causing harassment, alarm and distress.

Four Bounty Killer tracks called for gay people to be burned, drowned, wiped out, stoned and murdered, Mr Tatchell claimed.

Mr Tatchell said that while people had a right to criticise homosexuality, "they do not have a right to encourage queer-bashing violence and murder".

OutRage! is also calling for high street record stores to face legal action if they stock homophobic material.

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