Sheryl Crow was reportedly subjected to ongoing sexual harassment from Michael Jackson's manager while on tour with the King of Pop in 1987. Now the singer is ready to speak up about it.
Crow was a 25-year-old aspiring singer-songwriter at the time, working as a backup singer for Jackson, according to the U.K.'s Independent. Her career had just begun. She had never performed in front of a packed stadium before, and the tour seemed like a dream come true until Frank DiLeo, who was around 39 at the time, began to harass her, the outlet noted.
"Naiveté is such a beautiful thing. It was incredible in every way, shape and form for a young person from a really small town to see the world and to work with arguably the greatest pop star," she said. "But I also got a crash course in the music industry."
DiLeo reportedly promised to make her a star in exchange for sexual favors and threatened to destroy her music career before it had even begun should she decline. Crow returned home to Los Angeles from the tour only to be told by a high-powered lawyer she had hired that she should have given in to DiLeo's propositions to help advance her career. She did not speak about the experience in detail for years but alluded to it in the sixth song from her 1993 debut album, "The Na-Na Song."
"Frank DiLeo's dong, Maybe if I'd him I'd have had a hit song," she sings.
Crow then tweeted about her meeting with her lawyer at the height of the #MeeToo movement.
"A manager on my first big tour as a backup singer. When I went to a lawyer he told me to suck it up bc the guy could do a lot for me," she wrote. "... so I wrote songs about it on my first record."
Speaking about the movement with The Independent, Crow said that although it has been positive overall, it still had a way to go.
"It’s really interesting to go back and revisit some of this old stuff and the experiences that went along with it, and then to compare it with where we are now,” she said. "To be able to play that stuff about the long bout of sexual harassment I endured during the Michael Jackson tour and to talk about it in the midst of the MeToo movement... it feels like we’ve come a long way, but it doesn’t feel like we’re quite there yet."
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