Boy George has written that he’s “never gonna be friends” with Janet Jackson, calling her “unfriendly” in his new memoir, Karma: The Definitive Autobiography.
The Culture Club singer, whose autobiography was released in November 2023, wrote about his first encounter with contemporary Janet Jackson. The pair met backstage while taping an episode for the American music variety show, Solid Gold, in 1983.
Recounting that he approached her “without [his] face on”, George stated that Jackson did not return his congeniality. “She wasn’t friendly and didn’t try to be,” he wrote. “But I just walked off and got myself into my best ‘Boy George’ and was walking around backstage to make sure I was seen by everyone.”
He added that when a cameraman later approached him for a message to leave Jackson, he said: “Next time you meet someone, be nice.” Afterward, when George was ushered to Jackson’s dressing room, Jackson stated that she did not recognise him earlier, which prompted him to ask: “‘Are you saying you would have been nice to me if you knew who I was?’ We parted on awkward terms.”
George’s first encounter with Jackson was not the only recollection of a run-in with her in the book. He also noted that when he ran into her on an episode of Top Of The Pops, the ‘Rhythm Nation’ singer “looked straight to him”.
In an interview with People magazine, George stated that he had no issues publicly disclosing his negative encounters with fellow stars. “When you write a book like this, there’s a chance you’re going to bump into someone that you’ve written about,” he told the publication.
“I have to say what I’ve written about people is the truth of what happened and how they behaved. So I’m kind of comfortable with that. I’m always someone who’s prepared to bury the hatchet because there’s always another opportunity to be different.”
Nonetheless, he added that there are some people he remains uninterested in making amends with, including Jackson: “At this point, there’s certain people I’m never gonna be friends with unless a miracle happens — and I guess I put her in that category.”
Boy George has been keeping busy over the past year, spending the summer touring North America with Culture Club and support from Howard Jones and Berlin in a 25-date tour which began in West Palm Beach, Florida, and concluded in August with a date in Concord, California.
Most recently, Boy George was announced to join the cast of the broadway production of Moulin Rouge! The Musical in 2024. He will play the role of Harold Zidler, the owner of the Moulin Rouge club.
In other news, George also recently expressed his love for grindcore pioneers Napalm Death after attending a concert they played in Australia.