Phil Lewis, singer with veteran glam rockers L.A Guns, has stirred up a potential race storm after comments made from the stage in an attempted tribute to the passing of Prince which could be interpreted as a slight on black musicians.
It was while introducing his band’s most famous song ‘The Ballad of Jane’ that Lewis waded into hot water.
“I don’t wanna bum you out,” began Lewis from the stage during their live show in Halethrope, Maryland, “You know who just died, and I don’t wanna make a big… I don’t wanna bring it down or anything.
“I remember when we were working on Cocked And Loaded, we were on tour, and they said there was a venue that we could play in Minnesota. It was called First Avenue. And I didn’t know too much about it at the time. But after I saw the movie, and I got it. I was with the program.
“We were all into that Prince, right? Purple Rain. It was so cool, because, you know, you had all your heavy shit, and then you had the pop shit, and there was Prince doing his own fucking thing.”
He continued: “The problem is, right now and I’m not gonna be a racist about it but black people are all one-dimensional. We need more Princes, man. We need less fucking rappers and more people like Prince. There, I said it.”
His words could potentially be viewed in a negative light but Lewis continued on stage adding: “Anyway, when we first played First Avenue, nobody knew who the fuck we were. We were opening for someone.
“I don’t know. And it wasn’t going very well. I’ll be honest. You never know with these things. And then we played this song and it changed everything.”