Music Exec Apologizes For 'Horribly Insensitive' Tweet
Canadian music executive Jonathan Simkin apologized Thursday for a tweet he says was “a poor attempt … to address a serious issue” with the Juno Awards.
Simkin, co-founder of 604 Records with Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger, manages a roster of acts that includes pop star Carly Rae Jepsen, country singer Dallas Smith, and rock band Marianas Trench.
In a July 10th tweet that has since been deleted, Simkin wrote: “Just signed a new band. 2 guys, 2 gals. One is Indian, One is Korean, one is black, and one is physically impaired. I call them ‘The Inclusive 4’. Their music sucks balls – just horrible – but I figure they are a shoo-in to get on the @TheJUNOAwards broadcast next year.”
Facing growing backlash, Simkin posted a statement in which he admitted: “Upon reflection, I can see that the comments were horribly insensitive, and I understand why some people have been hurt by those words.
“To those people, I apologize. It was not my intent to cause hurt, or to cause people who feel disenfranchised to feel even more disenfranchised.”
This year’s Juno Awards show in Vancouver featured performances by Daniel Caesar and Jessie Reyez as well as a hip-hop collective that included Kardinall Offishall and Choclair.
Simkin, a father of a special needs child, claimed his “carelessly worded tweet sent from a hotel room after midnight” does not reflect “how I conduct my affairs and personal life.”
Have you ever thought of how many people of colour, women, different genders, sexual orientation, people with disabilities etc were denied opportunities for many years? It's a real process to undo that damage.— Gillian Thomson (@gilliandthomson) July 16, 2018
I personally wouldn’t have gone this route, wording wise, but I think it’s hard for people who have never hired (or fired) anyone to really understand this fully. And it’s (clearly) an uncomfortable, but fairly necessary conversation to have.— Joshua O'Connor (@ArmsRacePro) July 16, 2018
The Junos had a BNL reunion which is arguably the whitest thing in the history of whiteness. No need to worry, the Junos still celebrate white mediocrity. I'm sure your artists still all have a shot.— Erica Mac (@Piano_Punk) July 15, 2018