‘He owns my masters’: Rina Sawayama publicly calls out Matty Healy at Glastonbury Festival

Musician appeared to castigate The 1975 frontman for his controversial remarks on a recent podcast episode

Louis Chilton
Sunday 25 June 2023 08:04 BST
Rina Sawayama appears to call out The 1975 frontman Matty Healy over podcast controversy

Rina Sawayama seemingly took a swipe at The 1975 frontman Matty Healy during her Glastonbury 2023 set.

While introducing the song “STFU!” on the festival’s Woodsies stage, the 32-year-old Japanese-British artist made reference to Healy’s recent racism controversy, as well as his self-admitted pornography habits.

Crouching on the floor, Sawayama said: “Tonight, this goes out to a white man that watches Ghetto Gaggers, and mocks Asian people on a podcast... he also owns my masters... I’ve had enough.”

Follow along with all the updates from Glastonbury at our live blog.

Healy spoke about having watched Ghetto Gaggers – a brand of racially charged pornographic videos in which women of colour are reportedly put in submissive positions to white men – during an appearance on the Adam Friedland Show podcast.

The podcast also featured segments in which Healy made reference to the US rapper Ice Spice. The hosts of the podcast mistakenly identified the rapper as being from Hawaiian Inuit and Chinese heritage, mocking each accent.

Later in the podcast, the hosts, comedians Adam Friedland and Nick Mullen, performed impressions of Japanese people working in concentration camps, while Healy was heard joining in.

Sawayama and The 1975 are both signed to UK record label Dirty Hit. Healy served as director of Dirty Hit Limited, the label’s parent company, from 2018 until April 2023, when he left the role for unspecified reasons.

The Independent has contacted representatives of Healy and Dirty Hit for comment.

Healy issued an apology of-sorts to Ice Spice while onstage with The 1975 in Auckland, New Zealand. “I just feel a bit bad, and I’m kind of a bit sorry if I’ve offended you,” he said.

“Ice Spice, I’m sorry. It’s not because I’m annoyed that me joking got misconstrued. It’s because I don’t want Ice Spice to think I’m a d***. I love you, Ice Spice. I’m so sorry.”

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Rina Sawayama and Matty Healy
Rina Sawayama and Matty Healy (BBC/Getty)

According to Rolling Stone, Healy continued: “The truth is, I see a sign that says like, ‘Matty, I hope you’re OK.’ I feel a bit bad, to be honest, because I feel like I’ve been a bit irresponsible. It’s very well for me to say, ‘I don’t understand how famous I am. I don’t like being famous.’

“But reality is reality. And I think that I’ve said some things or kind of, I make a joke out of everything. That’s my thing. And I can take it too far sometimes in front of too many people. And I feel a bit embarrassed. So that’s the truth.”

Sawayama’s apparent dig at Healy didn’t escape the notice of viewers watching Glastonbury at home, with many sharing their thoughts on social media.

“Rina Sawayama calling out Matty Healy and incorporating a Limp Bizkit cover into ‘STFU’ is absolutely everything. I adore this woman,” one fan wrote.

“Matty Healy??? Owns rina’s masters???????” another person asked in bemusement.

“Rina Sawayama opening STFU by calling out Matty Healy, all is well,” someone else wrote.

Sawayama is best known for her 2022 record Hold the Girl, and also featured as an actor in the 2023 film John Wick: Chapter 4.

Matty Healy
Matty Healy (Apple Music)

Healy addressed the podcast controversy in an interview with The New York Times in May.

Asked if he had been “baiting” his fans with the remarks, he said: “A little bit. But it doesn’t actually matter. Nobody is sitting there at night slumped at their computer, and their boyfriend comes over and goes, ‘What’s wrong, darling?’ and they go, ‘It’s just this thing with Matty Healy.’ That doesn’t happen.”

The interviewer then suggested that “maybe” this does happen, prompting Healy to respond: “If it does, you’re either deluded or you are, sorry, a liar.

“You’re either lying that you are hurt, or you’re a bit mental for being hurt. It’s just people going, ‘Oh, there’s a bad thing over there, let me get as close to it as possible so you can see how good I am.’ And I kind of want them to do that, because they’re demonstrating something so base level.”

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