An EXCLUSIVE Interview With 80’s Pop Icon and Soon To Be Reality Show Star, BOY GEORGE!
Posted On 15 May 2015
Tag: 80's Icon, All Access, All Access Music, All Access Music Group, American Idol, Artist Interview, Boy George, Bunim/Murray, Clark Beckham, Culture Club, DJ, Harry Nillson, Jax, Karma Chameleon, Kim Kardashian, Kris Jenner, London, More Then Silence, Prince, reality TV, The Kardashians, The Tribe
As a member of the chart-topping 80’s group, Culture Club AND a successful solo career, Boy George has done it all! He is definitely one of music’s most iconic artists and for the past 30 years, he has maintained a strong position at the forefront of this ever-changing, multi-faceted industry.
To date George has sold over 100 million singles and in excess of 50 million albums as a performer and songwriter with Culture Club and as a solo artist. He presently continues to be one of the worlds most successful and in-demand international DJs touring extensively across the globe.
Boy George took time from revving up for his upcoming tour with Culture Club and his big move to LA to chat with All Access about it all and his new venture- a reality show!
You just announced that you are developing a reality docu-series chronicling your move from London to LA. What led to this decision now?
Well, I’ve been approached before at different points in my life and it never really felt like a good idea before but now it feels like these things are the new art form now. It’s exciting and I think it’s not something that I’d do in the UK. We don’t watch the UK ones there, we watch the American ones. We are fascinated by them. You do a better job there on them. So I met the people from (Van Nuys, CA production company) Bunim/Murray and I thought, let’s do it!
It’s a great platform and for an artist like me, I can sit over here in the corner twiddling my thumbs or do something that gives me some sort of credibility. You know, I don’t get played on the radio and I don’t have all the luxuries that I used to have 20 years ago. I’ve been in the DJ world for the last 25 years so I haven’t really had my foot in rock and roll at all. I’ve come back in the last few years and I put out a record last year. I think I’ve become dissapointed with the whole thing. Oh, is that it? (Haha) You put out a record, a little radio time and then no one cares. So I started looking into the whole branding thing and just playing on that stuff. That’s where the excitement is. You create a platform and I think it’s a great way to connect with people again.
Is there a name for the show yet?
Originally, it was going to be called “Boy George Coming to America” or “Coming Out in America” but it’s a little late for that those. (Haha) But yeah, I don’t know what we’ll decide. It was depend on the network that we decide on. They will have their say on what it’s called. Or what about “Karma Down”?? (Haha)
Will anything be off limits?
It’s one of those things that we can’t predict now. When I first met Murray and we talked about what it was going to be like, we couldn’t really answer that question because until you put all the characters into play and turn on all the lights and cameras, nobody really knows what the outcome is going to be. In a way, although it seems like a formula, until you turn on the lights, you don’t actually know what’s going to come out. Am I going to let them film me on the loo, probably not! (Haha) I mean, there are some things that will be off bounds but the rule is that we film everything, but not sex and toilet stuff of course.
I’m involved in the process of what gets shown but again, I think it’s one of those things that I had to think long and hard about when I first met Bunim/Murray. We talked about it all. There’s no point in doing it unless you are kind of going to jump head first into it. You either do it or you don’t. I’m not even sure I’m going to watch myself. I don’t really think about myself. I don’t need to read and watch everything about myself like I used to do.
I remember hearing about Prince and how after every show, he would sit with the band and watch the whole show. He would address the mistakes. But to me, the whole point is that it’s spontaneous and it is what it is and it’s real life. You aren’t editing it. You just get on with it and see what happens. I mean, how hard can it be to be me? (Haha) I’ve gotten much better at being myself in the last few years. (Haha) It’s been trial and error. I think right now, I kind of like myself and that wouldn’t be a bad thing to show to people. And also, I do lots of different things. I’d love to take people on some of these journeys that I go on, some of the crazy and spiritual stuff.
Right now, I’m very into food and cooking, and sharing ideas with people. I’m really into nutrition and all that too. I’ve been watching The Kardashians a lot recently to see how it’s formatted. I’m very different than Kim. They are very interesting though. My favorite one is the mother, Kris! There’s something about her that I really like. It makes me think about whether I am interesting or not. I’ll find out soon!
Last month you were a mentor on American Idol. What was that experience like?
It was very surprisingly good because I really thought that whatever I did, it was going to be very cosmetic and I wouldn’t really make a difference. I though that they wouldn’t really listen to me but it was actually quite the opposite. I was able to really make a concrete difference and it was really good to share my experiences with these young kids and sort of talk to them about their craft and the emotions of performing.
It was great when they did the show. There were kids that changed and really stepped up. It was exciting! I was very surprised that I was able to make the kind of difference that I did. It was just a pleasure. I love singers. Young people are just so enthusiastic and they are just at the beginning of their journey so it was nice to be around that kind of energy.
For me the one with the most heart is Clark Beckham. I think he has real potential. He’s got a Harry Nilsson quality about him. I also love the piano girl, Jax. I really like her but they are all great and really different. And they all have something. It’s really hard to say who is the best. All of the stuff that they do matters, what they wear, their hair, everything. It all matters.
So this summer, Culture Club will be heading out on tour. What can fans expect from your shows?
We’ll be doing a lot of classics and a handful of new things. We are really excited about the new record. I think it’s the best thing we have ever done. I think we were very lucky to grow up in the 70’s and have a career in the 80’s. So all of those things come through in the work that we are doing now.
It’s going to be a really fun show! We are going to try to make sure people leave with a big grin on their face. (Haha)
How will music be a part of your show?
Well, I have a band that I’m looking after and another young artist and I’m looking to break them in America or at least make people aware of them. And I’m really excited to write more and work with American songwriters and producers. So, yes a huge part of the show will be about music.
How is this show going to be different then all the other reality shows out there today?
It’s going to be different then all the other because I’ll be in it. I’m not on The Kardashians…. yet! (Haha)