Dutch organisers were scrambling Sunday to find a new song to mark the upcoming enthronement of the Netherlands' new king after a serenade written especially for the inauguration attracted a storm of criticism for its "imbecilic" lyrics.
"Dear compatriots, after having to block yet another insult on my Twitter account, I am now totally done," Dutch-British composer John Ewbank wrote on his Facebook page late Saturday.
"My apologies to those who found it an appropriate song... but I hereby withdraw the Koningslied (King's Song) and wish you plenty of success" in singing one of the unofficial songs written for the inauguration of the new Dutch monarch, Willem-Alexander, on April 30.
Tens of thousands of Dutch citizens have been voicing their dismay since the song was unveiled on Friday, trashing the anthem which is an unlikely combination of traditional, rap and choir music.
An online petition rejecting what is described as an "imbecilic" tune has been signed by more than 38,000 people.
The song, which lasts just over five minutes, is performed by 51 Dutch artists, many of them stars in the Netherlands.
They belt out much-mocked lyrics such as: "I build a dyke with my bare hands and keep the water away" and "three fingers in the air, come on, come on. That's the W (sign) for Willem, the W which represents being wakeful and eating 'stamppot' (a traditional Dutch dish made from vegetables and a sausage)."
Summing up much of the tune's criticism in the Netherlands, with its strong egalitarian and Protestant roots, one anonymous petitioner comments: "The song makes it sound like Willem-Alexander is some kind of god and we're his underlings to whom he gives his life... away with it!"
The plan was for all the artists to come together for a concert in Rotterdam on April 30 when the country will be holding nationwide celebrations to mark the royal handover.
The National Inauguration Committee tasked with arranging the event said they were disappointed but understood Ewbank's decision.
"The intention remains to serenade the king on April 30. Together with the Dutch public broadcaster the committee will seek a solution," national news agency ANP quoted the committee as saying.
It convened on Sunday to discuss alternatives just over a week before the King's inauguration, an event not witnessed in the Netherlands since Queen Beatrix ascended the throne in 1980.
In his message, Ewbank himself suggested alternatives including a catchy tune called "You're the king," written by two students from the central university city of Utrecht.
Posted two days ago, the cheeky song has already been watched more than 263,000 times on YouTube.
In a reference to Willem-Alexander's hugely popular Argentine wife Maxima, who will soon be crowned Queen, the students sing: "What a matchless wife you have, the ideal companion. If I was king, I would have known it as well."
Sociology professor Johan Heilbron said the song written by Ewbank -- an award-winning composer -- had fallen victim to what he termed intellectual "populism."
"Many of its fiercest critics are from the highly-educated sector of Dutch society. They believe the song is below the standards of what is acceptable and that's a bit of a pity," he told AFP.
Willem-Alexander, currently crown prince, will be the Netherlands' first king in more than a century when he takes over from his 75-year-old abdicating mother, Queen Beatrix.
The 45-year-old has promised to be a traditional king, though one seen as approachable and not a "protocol fetishist".
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In this Dec. 6, 1940 file photo, Crown Princess Juliana of the Netherlands is seen with her two daughters, Princess Beatrix, left, and Princess Irene, right. (AP Photo, File)
In this May 13, 1967 file photo, Dutch crown Princess Beatrix and her husband Claus admire their newborn son, Prince Alexander, at their residence Castle Drakensteyn in Baarn, Netherlands. (AP Photo, File)
In this July 25, 1968 file photo, Netherlands' Queen Beatrix, and her husband Prince Claus pose with their 15-month-old son Prince Willem Alexander in front of the Royal family's summer villa in Porto Ercole, Italy. (AP Photo/Mario Torrisi, File)
In this April 30, 1980 file photo, Queen Beatrix, left, and her husband Prince Claus, right, are shown during her crowning ceremony at Nieuwe Kerk, or New Church in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (AP Photo, File)
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In this April 30, 1980 file photo, Queen Beatrix is shown during her crowning ceremony at Nieuwe Kerk, or New Church in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (AP Photo, File)
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In this Tuesday, July 13, 2010 file photo, The Netherlands' World Cup team poses with Queen Beatrix, center, at Noordeinde Palace in The Hague, Netherlands, during a day of celebrations for the tournament runners-up. (AP Photo/Rob Keeris, File)
In this Sept. 21, 2010 file photo Dutch Queen Beatrix, right, and Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, left, wave to wellwishers from the balcony of Royal Palace Noordeinde after the Queen officially opened the new parliamentary year in The Hague, Netherlands. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)
Dutch Queen Beatrix arrives on Budget Day in the Ridderzaal in The Hague, on Tuesday, September 20, 2011 where she presented the coming financial year. (ROBIN UTRECHT/AFP/Getty Images)
In this Sept. 20, 2011 file photo, Dutch Queen Beatrix formally opens the new parliamentary year with a speech in The Hague, Netherlands, Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2011. (AP Photo/Toussaint Kluiters, Pool, File)
In this Sept. 20, 2011 file photo, Dutch Queen Beatrix, left, Crown Prince Willem Alexander, right, and his wife Princess Maxima, center, wave to wellwishers from the balcony of Royal Palace Noordeinde after the Queen officially opened the new parliamentary year in The Hague, Netherlands. (AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski, File)
In this April 30, 2012 file photo, Netherlands' Queen Beatrix, left, and Crown Prince Willem Alexander, right, are seen on stage at the end festivities marking Queen's Day in Rhenen, central Netherlands. (AP Photo/Robin Utrecht, Pool, File)
In this Monday, April 30, 2012 file photo, Dutch Queen Beatrix waves to well wishers during festivities marking Queen's Day in Veenendaal, central Netherlands. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)
Dutch Queen Beatrix poses for a photographer prior or shortly after announcing her April 30, 2013, abdication in a prerecorded speech in The Hague, Netherlands, Monday Jan. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/RVD, HO)