Winston Marshall to take a break from Mumford & Sons, following controversial praise of Andy Ngo book

“Over the past few days I have come to better understand the pain caused by the book I endorsed.”

Winston Marshall

Image: Scott Dudelson / Getty

When you purchase through affiliate links on Guitar.com, you may contribute to our site through commissions. Learn more

Mumford & Sons’ guitarist and banjo player Winston Marshall has announced that he will take a break from the band, following backlash to his praise for Unmasked, a book by controversial right-wing media figure Andy Ngo.

Writing in a statement on Twitter, Marshall apologised for the offence caused and also noted that his endorsement had affected his bandmates. He said: “Over the past few days I have come to better understand the pain caused by the book I endorsed. I have offended not only a lot of people I don’t know, but also those closest to me, including my bandmates and for that I am truly sorry. As a result of my actions I am taking time away from the band to examine my blindspots.”

Marshall concluded: “For now, please know that I realise how my endorsements have the potential to be viewed as approvals of hateful, divisive behaviour. I apologise, as this was not at all my intention.”


Response to Marshall’s apology on Twitter has largely come from an opposite political direction to the initial controversy. Users have accused Marshall of bowing to a perceived cancel culture for apologising for his endorsement. Conservative author and commentator Mark Dice said: “You’re pathetic. Now I hope you do get cancelled.”

Lead singer of metalcore band All That Remains, Philip Labonte, replied simply: “Coward.”

Fans and non-fans alike had spoken out against Marshall’s now-deleted tweet, which praised Ngo and Unmasked, saying: “Finally had the time to read your important book. You’re a brave man.”

Unmasked claims that the decentralised left-wing movement Antifa has a “radical plan to destroy democracy,”  and calls left-wing activists a “marauding gang” intent on destroying “nation-state, America in particular”.  It also calls the far-right white nationalist group the Proud Boys a “pro-Trump fraternity.”

Fans of Mumford & Sons expressed disappointment at his support for Ngo, whose journalistic tactics and ethics have faced widespread criticism from fact-checking agencies and other media outlets.

For more music news, click here.

Related Tags


The world’s leading authority and resource for all things guitar.

© 2024 Guitar.com is part of NME Networks.