Friday, October 5, 2012

The Eversons - Harlot

Across rock music history there is a rich tradition of people writing songs about messy breakups. Imagine a world without Blondie's "One Way Or Another", Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" or even Alanis Morrisette's "You Oughta Know"? Sometimes, however, these songs can be a little too personal, and it seems that we've crossed the line with the release of The Eversons' digital b-side "Harlot" this week.

Lil' Chief Records unreservedly apologises to the person that the song has been interpreted as being a personal attack on, and to all others who were offended by the lyrical content of said song. Our initial impression of the song was that it was a love song to a sex worker, however we should have realised it's potential to hurt an individual and now recognise that it is both sexist and misogynistic and that we failed to screen it properly.

We understand that our handling of this affair may be seen as unsatisfactory by many, and for that we apologise too. This is new experience for us - in 10 years of business we have never experienced a strong negative response to a release, and within reason do not believe in censoring our artists. We will now certainly be more mindful of the possible impact that our future releases may have, whether they be A-sides or B-sides.

"Harlot" has been removed from Bandcamp at The Eversons' request, and will not be reissued in any other way in the future. (If it was a physical product, it'd now be as rare as one of those "butcher" cover Beatles albums.)

Songwriter Mark Turner issued an initial apology on Wednesday concerning the lyrical content, and the band and Mark have released a further apology today.

The core response to the song can be found here on the The Eversons Facebook page, while further discussion can be found on the Lil' Chief Facebook page and here. We've learnt a lot from these comments over the last few days, and so would encourage anyone that is interested in learning more to have a read or contribute.

On a side note, we have been dismayed at how nasty and threatening some of the comments have become, including threats of physical violence towards some comment makers. The song has clearly sparked an impassioned debate, but we ask that the small number of people using it as an excuse to air personal grievances and make physical threats, even when made in jest, refrain from doing so as this does nothing to help the cause but rather blurs the message.