The former Radio 1 DJ Mike Read has apologised for “unintentionally causing offence” with his “Ukip Calypso”, sung with a mock Caribbean accent, adding that he had asked his record company to withdraw the song from sale.
The song, which praises the anti-EU party and its leader Nigel Farage, included the lyrics: “With the EU we must be on our mettle, want to change our lawnmowers and our kettles.”
Read said: “I’m so sorry that the song unintentionally caused offence. That was never my intention and I apologise unreservedly if anyone has taken offence.
“I’ve asked the record company to withdraw the single immediately.”
However, Ukip blamed “synthetic outrage” for his decision to withdraw his calypso from sale – accusing “right-on” critics of depriving a charity of cash to help the fight against Ebola.
The track was promoted by Mr Farage when it was released, with the politician urging his followers to help get it to No 1 and including a link to buy the song on Amazon. But it was dubbed racist by some critics.
Ukip said it regretted that Read had felt obliged to ask his record company to withdraw it from sale and said it would donate its share of the proceeds so far to the Red Cross to help make up for income the charity would miss from future sales.
Read, a former Conservative supporter, also used the song to warn his listeners against trusting David Cameron, singing: “The British people have been let down, that’s why Ukip is making ground. From Crewe to Cleethorpes, from Hull to Hendon, they don’t believe Cameron’s referendum.”
Read, who hosts an afternoon show on BBC Berkshire, spent more than a decade at Radio 1. He hit the headlines in 1984 when he refused to play the Frankie Goes To Hollywood single “Relax” because he objected to its lyrics.Reuse content