Boy George: ‘Nobody knows what they’re doing, that’s what the music business is, it’s chaos’
Culture Club frontman Boy George had a very candid conversation with Jackie Brambles on her Greatest Hits Radio evening show this evening. The singer opened up about his time in the jungle on ‘I’m A Celebrity…’, getting fired by Malcom McLaren and why William and Harry are like Liam and Noel Gallagher.
On his time in ‘I’m A Celebrity…’: ‘I don’t regret doing it, but I don’t necessarily understand the show. I feel like what went on in there wasn’t shown [on screen]. We had such a laugh and there were some amazing conversations, a lot of intimacy but there was quite a limited narrative that went out. I mean you can’t spend 24 hours with someone and not have a decent conversation – I didn’t just talk about mushrooms! I’m not a one-dimensional human being and there was a slightly one-dimensional portrayal but having come out of the jungle the amount of people that have come up to me and said I should have won is hilarious. I’m like why didn’t you vote for me then!’
On life in the music industry: ‘Everyone in our business is winging it. Nobody knows what they’re doing, that’s what the music business is – it’s chaos. And I’m sorry to say this but it’s run by people who just don’t know what they’re talking about! It’s run by people who’ve never made records and they’re telling you what sort of records you should make. For me, at this point, I have my own label and I live outside the music business so I’m able to just do what I want. Our business tends to forget what people do, what you are and what you did. And I think it’s because the music industry is always trying to find something younger because it’s run by old people that are frightened of getting old. I’m soon going to be the only person in the world with my own face – no Botox, no filler!’
Jackie asked George how Culture Club have remained together when so many other bands of the era have broken up or had a change of line-up, comparing it to being like a family. George said: ‘William and Harry are like the Oasis brothers – I don’t know which is which I’ll leave that one up to you! But that’s really what it is. Once you understand everyone’s their own person in the band and everyone’s got their own grudges and frustrations, it’s about learning to communicate. You need everyone in the band to be into the idea or it can’t work. You’ve all got to be on the same page and you’ve all got to want to be there – that’s really important.’
On being fired from 80s new wave band Bow Wow Wow: ‘I did two gigs with them, and the second gig was at Manchester Poly. They were all spitting at me, so I hit the crowd with the mic stand and I was sacked by Malcolm McLaren who thought I was a little too much for Bow Wow Wow! Then I was like ‘how dare they fire me! I’m going to set up my own band’ so Culture Club was initially an act of rebellion, but it’s ironic because we do I Want Candy in the set now so it’s kind of like a full circle moment.’
Listen to Boy George chat to Jackie Brambles on Greatest Hits Radio at greatesthitsradio.co.uk