So this may not mean too much to people outside the UK, but back in the early 00’s, Lee Ryan was part of a big UK RnB boyband, Blue. Then they reformed last year and two nights ago he went into the Celebrity Big Brother House.
I interviewed Lee back in 2010 and have been meaning to write this up for ages, the Mariah story is too good to just sit in my files. But actually as I’ve been writing this up, the interview just keeps giving and giving. So here we go, in all his deluded glory, I present Lee Ryan….
Hi Lee, what’s new?
Well right now I’m sitting with you in the Mayfair Hotel having a cappuccino. I’ve had a few meetings about film stuff that I’m doing. I’ve just had some great news about a film i’ve written and am producing. A really amazing director is now attached but I can’t talk about it. I’m not playing around. I really want to make an impact on the film industry. I think I’ve already made an impact on the music industry with the 14m records Blue sold. I’m only 26 - I got in the industry when I was 16. People forget how young I was.
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I love RuPaul. I still remember the first time I saw her in some magazine on the back of the school bus - I was taken aback. The blonde hair. Those legs. Those dresses??! All sickening, darling!
So, as with anyone I love, when it comes to interview them, I want it to be a piece I can be proud of. Plus, like anyone who has been in the game over 20 years - there’s a lot to ask! On top of that, we all know Ru has pretty much left her days of being a shady bitch behind her but that always makes for a good read so girl, I was nervous.
But I needn’t have been. What Ru had to offer was so much more insightful, intelligent and inspiring than what I originally wanted. Ru even had some great for advice me, right when I needed it.
Sure there are things I would have asked in hindsight - due to publishing rights this interview was actually done in February so this season hadn’t started and I couldn’t ask about the current girls.
But anyway enough from me, SILENCE and enjoy.
Hello hello hello, how are you, Ru?
I’m good, thank you. And you?
I’m a bit nervous. I’ve been looking forward to talking to you.
I understand the nervous thing. I’ve been there and stuff but as an older gentleman it’s so funny for me to focus on that. It takes so much more to get that kind of thrill. The body, the ego, actually loves the feeling of that adrenaline. But obviously there’s nothing to get nervous about. Is the fear that I am going to hate you?
No, it’s just I have so many questions for you, I want to make sure this is the best interview EVER!
Well listen I am going to answer all those questions with this answer: 36, 24, 36 and yes they’re real.
'If you want an International Drag Race y’all are going to have to speak to the Government. We want to do all of that shit but it is made very hard by the Government trying to get visas and all that bullshit.'
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You know Peter Tatchell. He’s the man that has consistently campaigned for LGBT rights since the 1980s. He has attempted a citizen’s arrest on Robert Mugabe. He is a key figure of the radical gay-rights non-violent direct action group OutRage! He is someone that even the Daily Mail recognises as ‘an example to us all.’
But what about the Peter Tatchell that is a fan of Tinie Tempah and ‘loves’ Chris Brown’s music? Or the Peter Tatchell that partied at Heaven in the 80s? We don’t hear much about him. I sat down to find out more about the man that listens to Whitney Houston and considers both Madonna and Britney to be in his ‘good books.’
We also discussed how he believed Whitney was having a relationship with her best friend Robyn, the times he has feared for his life and how he wouldn’t be surprised if Louis Smith eventually came out.
Peter, you’ve accomplished so much already and been in some pretty precarious situations. What has been the scariest moment of your life so far?
Well there have been two. One was being beaten by Robert Mugabe’s bodyguards in Brussels in 2001. The second was being badly beaten by neo-nazis in Moscow in 2007. During both attacks I thought ‘Am I going to make it out alive?’ It was terrifying. Those two attacks have left me with minor brain and eye injuries. I have got problems with my co-ordination, balance, concentration and memory. Plus the sight in my right eye has been quite severely damaged. It doesn’t stop me campaigning or living my life but I am slower. It’s more of a struggle than it used to be. But I count myself lucky compared to LGBT activists in Iran, Russia or Zimbabwe. They are at risk of being arrested, tortured, jailed and perhaps even killed.
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Mary J Blige. Does she need an introduction? One of RnB’s biggest survivors. She has been through a drug addiction, an abusive relationship, been written off by her label - and yet here she is back with the best selling RnB album of 2012 and a starring role in the Rock of Ages movie. Just don’t mention KFC…
Is it painful listening to your old albums?
It’s hard listening to the My Life album. It always make me want to cry. I could not believe I was being treated so badly, that I was treating myself so badly and that I was allowing myself to be treated so badly. I did a lot of drugs. I did a lot of things - not just weed - but beyond that. At that point I was hooked. Was it easier to write back then? I would say it was equal really, because wherever you are, if you’re just honest, it will come out easily. So it’s easy in heaven, easy in hell.
But I remember Aaliyah died on 25th August, then right after the World Trade Centre blew up. I was like ‘OK, am I next?’ That’s where I was at. I had an ulcer from drinking and I knew spiritually I couldn’t go on like that.
I blame it all on not being ready for the Music Industry. If you get all this fame before you’re ready, you can start getting ‘high on your own supply’ and begun to believe the hype. Artist Development should be a major part of every label. Too many people are ending up like Amy Winehouse, no one is preparing them for this.
Congratulations to Elton John and David Furnish on the birth of their second son, Elijah Joseph. Aww…
Elton John: Madonna’s career is over. Her tour has been a disaster and it couldn’t happen to a bigger c***.
If Madonna had any common sense she would have made a record like Ray Of Light and stayed away from the dance stuff and just been a great pop singer and make great pop records, which she does brilliantly.
But no, she had to go and prove… she looks like a f****** fairground stripper. She’s been horrible to Gaga. I love Gaga, Katy Perry and Rihanna.