James Arthur tells gig crowd: ‘I’m not a homophobe anymore’

The 'X Factor' winner references row over offensive lyrics onstage in Edinburgh

James Arthur said that he is “not a homophobe anymore” during a headline show in Edinburgh last night (January 9).

At the end of last year, Arthur was forced to apologise for making “silly mistakes” and cancel a number of promotional activities after making homophobic comments in a rap.

Rapper Micky Worthless recorded a track mocking the X Factor winner following his appearance on 1Xtra’s Fire In The Booth in November. In response, Arthur laid down a diss track of his own, in which he called Worthless “fucking queer” and compared him to the Taliban.

However, as The Guardian reports, Arthur introduced his new single ‘Get Down’ to a sold out audience at Edinburgh’s Usher Hall on Thursday night (January 8) by saying: “This one will hopefully get played on the radio, cause I’m not a homophobe any more.” Arthur later added: “I’m not much of a public speaker.”

Arthur was criticised by Matt Lucas, Frankie Boyle and more for his homophobic lyrics in 2013, and quit Twitter in November. The singer returned to the social network, however, when former X Factor contestant Lucy Spraggan shared text messages apparently sent by Arthur following the spat over the lyrics.

James Arthur’s UK tour continues throughout January and will conclude in early February with two dates at Belfast’s Waterfront Hall.