Clive Davis is one of the most legendary execs in the history of the music business, responsible for launching the careers of Whitney Houston, Alicia Keys, and many others. His new memoir, The Soundtrack Of My Life, is making major waves thanks in part to his admission that he is bisexual, but mainly because of the harsh manner in which he criticized the universally beloved Kelly Clarkson.
In The Soundtrack To My Life, Clive Davis puts Kelly Clarkson on blast, revealing that she burst into a fit of “hysterical sobbing” when he insisted that she include “Since U Been Gone” on her sophomore LP, a song that went on to become her biggest hit to date. However, Kelly Clarkson took to The Internets this afternoon to strongly refute those allegations, insinuating along the way that Davis may have lost some of his mental faculties.
“Not true at all,” Clarkson writes on her WhoSay page, “his stories and songs are mixed up.” She claims that she, along with “Since U Been Gone” co-writers/producers Max Martin and Dr. Luke, fought with Clive to include “more guitars” on the song. She does admit to crying in front of Clive, though, but only because he told her to her face during the My December sessions that she was a “sh*tty writer who should be grateful for the gifts that he bestows upon me.” DAMN!
Davis has yet to reply to Clarkson’s allegations, but Clarkson has always been known in the industry as a straight shooter through good times and bad. That said, artists do have a way of positioning the suits who run the industry as soulless bullies who care more about the bottom line than the art (mannnnnn), so we don’t know who to believe. Who do YOU believe?
If you’re curious, here’s the complete text of Kelly Clarkson’s WhoSay response:
February 19, 2013 Hey y’all,
So I just heard Clive Davis is releasing a memoir and spreading false information about me and my music. I refuse to be bullied and I just have to clear up his memory lapses and misinformation for myself and for my fans. It feels like a violation. Growing up is awesome because you learn you don’t have to cower to anyone – even Clive Davis.
First, he says I burst into “hysterical sobbing” in his office when he demanded Since You Been Gone be on my album. Not true at all. His stories and songs are mixed up. I did want more guitars added to the original demo and Clive did not. Max, Luke and I still fought for the bigger sound and we prevailed and I couldn’t be more proud of the life of that song. I resent him dampening that song in any way.
But, yes, I did cry in his office once. I cried after I played him a song I had written about my life called “Because Of You.” I cried because he hated it and told me verbatim that I was a “sh*tty writer who should be grateful for the gifts that he bestows upon me.” He continued on about how the song didn’t rhyme and how I should just shut up and sing. This was devastating coming from a man who I, as a young girl, considered a musical hero and was so honored to work with.
But I continued to fight for the song and the label relented. And it became a worldwide hit. He didn’t include that in the book.
He also goes on to say My December wasn’t successful because I co-penned the album and it didn’t have “pop hits”. Well, first let me say, I’ve co-penned many of my “pop hits.” Secondly, My December went platinum (It sold 20,000 less than All I Ever Wanted which followed My December.) Hardly a huge failure. Never Again, the ONLY single they released in the US from that record was a Top 10 hit. I am very proud of that and I have my fans to thank. But, again, what’s most interesting about his story is what he leaves out: He doesn’t mention how he stood up in front of his company at a convention and belittled me and my music and completely sabotaged the entire project. It never had a chance to reach it’s full potential. My December was an album I needed to make for myself for many reasons and the fact that I was so completely disregarded and disrespected was so disheartening, there really aren’t words to explain….
Anyway, I love my job. I love my music. I love my fans. I love my label and all of my professional relationships… now. And I am grateful for Clive for teaching me to know the difference.
Cheers to another amazing year! And, as always, thanks for listening!
[Photo: Getty Images]