Skunk Anansie's Skin: 'I was irritated when Beyoncé said she was first'
She blazed a trail for black headliners at Glastonbury – as Stormzy acknowledged. The singer talks about making a stand – and the time Americans prayed for her deliverance
‘They called my girlfriend a white supremacist,” says Skin indignantly, over the noisy chatter of a pub in east London, leaning towards me on a creaky old leather sofa and recalling a recent incident where her partner was called out online. “I think the woke kids go too far. They call my girlfriend a white supremacist? I mean what is that? I mean, how dare you? Do you know what a white supremacist is? Do you know what those people do? And you’re aligning my girlfriend and me with these people?”
Right from the start, our interview, which is taking place on a muggy summer evening, has been touched by Skin’s mantra: “Everything is political.” As the frontwoman of rock band Skunk Anansie, the 52-year-old is a queer black icon, known for such consciously emotive anthems as Weak and Hedonism, not to mention her fashion sense. She has been called radical, but these days seems to be treading slightly new terrain in the era of “wokeness”. Her band, currently on a European tour, formed in 1994, sandwiched by the politics of John Major and the relative banality of Britpop – worlds away from the discourse happening today.Continue reading...