Monday 23 September 2019

'What’s tried on women is tried on men as well' - Tom Jones says abuse and harassment common in music industry as well as Hollywood

The Voice coach said he had some experience of harassment when he was starting out.

Sir Tom Jones
Sir Tom Jones

By Laura Harding, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Sir Tom Jones has said the abuse and harassment alleged to take place in Hollywood is also common in the music industry with both men and women.

The singer said he had been on the receiving end of similar experiences when he was starting out.

Discussing the allegations surrounding Harvey Weinstein in an interview with the BBC, the veteran star said: “Things have always happened in the music industry as well.

National Television Awards 2017 – Arrivals – London

“There’s been people complaining about publicists and different things they’ve been expected to do to get a record contract, just like a film contract.”

Asked whether it was something he had experienced, Sir Tom replied: “Yes. At the beginning, yes.”

He told BBC Radio 5 Live’s Afternoon Edition: “There were a few things like that. But you avoid it. You just walk out… But what’s tried on women is tried on men as well.”

The Voice coach said the encounter made him feel “terrible”.

The Voice UK Launch – London

He added: “But then you think, ‘Well, I’ve got to get away from this person and it can’t be like this.’

“You should know that yourself, you don’t do things just because you think, ‘I should do this.’ Your own mind will tell you that. Not just in showbusiness, but in anything you’re in.”

He added: “There’s always been that element there that people with power sometimes abuse it, but they don’t all abuse it, there are good people.”

When questioned further about his own experience early on in his career, he said: “It wasn’t bad, just somebody tried to pull… it was a question and I said ‘No thank you.'”

ITV Gala 2016 – London

Contemplating the recent allegations against leading members of the entertainment industry, including Weinstein, Sir Tom said: “Things happen in showbusiness, and sometimes things are covered up and then they come to light and other people come forward – it’s like taking the cork off of a bottle.

“Things come out that maybe should’ve come out years ago, who knows. But that’s the way it is with showbusiness, you are in the public eye, and that’s it, you have to take the good with the bad.

“But justice will out. If you’ve done something wrong you’ve got to pay for it, or prove that you haven’t done anything wrong.”

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