Payne talks about being labeled as homophobic and future plans as a solo artist.

It’s all love for Liam Payne.

Last month, One Direction’s Liam Payne said something during a show that came off a tad offensive towards the LGBT community. During the introduction to their song “Girl Almighty” from the Four album, Payne said: “It’s about trying to find that number one woman in your life — which none of you can relate to, since most of you are girls, except for the boys in here. YOU know what I’m talking about!”

Payne logged on Twitter after catching wind of the backlash to clarify, admitting he fumbled his words and it got taken out of context:

“lol think some people take things to literal these days not gunna comment on it anymore you guys know what I meant it was meant in general. I am in no way shape or form homophobic that’s a ridicules thing to say and I’m not here to offend people so take it as you will. So annoying trying your hardest to make people happy in a show and you think about all the notes u tried to hit higher or a little sweeter. And all some people want to concentrate on was a throw away statement about a song that I love. Crap end to a good day. Lol this is so insane the more I read I’m like wtf have u ever said something in the wrong way I’m sure every person here has lol. I’m sorry to those I offended really I am but there’s no need for some of the things I’m being called. I’m just here to make people smile I kinda consider it my job role.”

The flub came after his open appreciation for Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson, whose father compared homosexuality to **********. At the time, Payne said he had “huge love” for his family and “respect” for their “family values,” though in his new interview claims he had no idea of the controversy when he said that.

“[I] didn’t know about the comments Phil had made. It had only been in the press in America. I was most definitely not supporting what he said. I hadn’t even heard it.” Payne adds he was only admiring their “tight family relationship” and is “not supportive of everything they say.”

“A lot of my friends are gay and I don’t think anything about it. I actually find it funny that being gay is still something that’s talked about as though it’s not natural. I mean, I don’t go around saying, ‘Oh, this guy is gay.’ I don’t make a big deal about it. I will just say, ‘This is my mate.’ My mates are my mates, regardless of their sexuality.”

Payne also opened up his future plans as a recording artist now that One Direction is embarking on a musical hiatus beginning some time next year.

“I realize now this is the time to start branching out and exploring,” Payne says of group’s break. “This won’t last forever, and there will be a point when we will break off and do our own things, but… we will work together again.”

“A lot of people say to me, ‘Oh, you’ll go solo,’ but I haven’t thought about that. If the right song comes along and I think I should sing it, then I will release it as a solo artist. Otherwise, I’m happy being behind the scenes. When the others boys [in the group] go solo, I would love to write songs for them. I want to make great music that people want to listen to.”

Via Billboard