Home > Vulture News > Kelly Clarkson Blasts Clive Davis’ New Memoir, Says He Told Her She Was A “Sh*tty Writer”: Howard Stern Defends Clarkson

Kelly Clarkson Blasts Clive Davis’ New Memoir, Says He Told Her She Was A “Sh*tty Writer”: Howard Stern Defends Clarkson

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In his new memoir, The Soundtrack of My Life, former Arista records president Clive Davis‘ reveals, among other things, that he’s bisexual. That revelation has received little attention compared to some of the other anecdotes in the book dealing with the high profile musicians that he’s worked with over the course of his career. Davis tells that Kelly Clarkson hated two songs that would go on to become her biggest hits.

He writes that when he presented, “Since U Been Gone” and “Behind These Hazel Eyes,” as possible songs for her album, Clarkson was not pleased:

It was a very tough conversation, and it didn’t get any easier when Kelly burst into hysterical sobbing. We all just sat there and she cried for a several minutes. No one knew what to say.

Clarkson disputed Davis’ version of events and published an online response on Tuesday:

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.

The next day, Clarkson found a defender in Sirius Radio Host Howard Stern.

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In a lengthy diatribe, during the Wednesday broadcast of The Howard Stern Show, he said:

This guy’s trying to diminish what she does. Doesn’t he have enough in his life? Can’t he tell his story without fucking degrading her and putting her down. I just gotta believe, and I don’t know Kelly Clarkson at all. I like some of her songs. I think she’s got an amazing voice. And the girl has worked hard to get to where she is. I don’t understand Clive Davis’ motivation for knocking her down. He should shut the fuck up. It’s not becoming. He’s 80 years old. Clive Davis is brilliant, I’m sure he’s had as many failures as hits. He doesn’t need to build himself by taking Kelly Clarkson apart.

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Davis has stood by his word, despite the media backlash. In a post on the site TwitLonger he wrote:

As anyone who has read “The Soundtrack of My Life” knows, I think Kelly Clarkson is a tremendous vocal talent and performer. In the book, I provide an in-depth look at our years together during which we shared major multi-platinum success, as well as a few creative differences. I am truly very sorry that she has decided to take issue with what I know to be an accurate depiction of our time together. Before the book was published, I had every fact checked with five independent individuals who were present on a daily basis throughout it all. The chapter as it is written was thoroughly verified by each and every one of them. I stand by the chapter as written in my book. At the same time I wish, and will always wish, Kelly’s talent and her career to soar to ever new heights.

Clarkson can take solace in the fact that her last album went platinum. And as she is well aware, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Even when it comes to being dissed in an old music mogul’s best selling memoir.

The full transcript of Howard Stern’s entertaining defense of Clarkson is posted below.

The thing I got from it is, Clive Davis wrote this book. And he’s trying to use this girl and say, ‘Hey, look at what a genius I am.’ She didn’t want ‘Since U Been Gone.’ And meanwhile, she issued a statement saying, ‘Hey, Clive Davis is a bully.’ That he is claiming this, she goes well, ‘I see it all a different way. I wanted to add more guitars into Since U Been Gone. He didn’t. And they did add more guitars and it worked.’ She says, ‘I don’t recall crying and then him forcing me to do Since U Been Gone. I love that song and I was very much for it.’

Now, whether Clive Davis’ memory is correct or Kelly Clarkson’s memory is correct. I gotta side with Kelly Clarkson. As a guy who works in a business where I am talent. I’m not in management. but I always find it sickening when management guys like to set the record straight about how fucking creative and what geniuses they are. First of all Clive Davis has got billions of dollars, he’s at the end of his life. He’s 85 years old. Or 80-something years old. And he really doesn’t need a book out there to make money. Kelly Clarkson is still a young girl in her career, trying to make it as an artist.

This guy’s trying to diminish what she does. Doesn’t he have enough in his life? Can’t he tell his story without fucking degrading her and putting her down. I just gotta believe, and I don’t know Kelly Clarkson at all. I like some of her songs. I think she’s got an amazing voice. And the girl has worked hard to get to where she is. I don’t understand Clive Davis’ motivation for knocking her down.

He should shut the fuck up. It’s not becoming. He’s 80 years old. Clive Davis is brilliant, I’m sure he’s had as many failures as hits. He doesn’t need to build himself by taking Kelly Clarkson apart.

And you know, the other thing about it is, In my own career, I’ve worked for people. Powerful people. They ain’t the ones sitting and writing the jokes. They ain’t the ones laying up at night, sitting there and making the show popular. Trust me. Some of them fucked me and slowed me down. In fact, I’d say all them fucked me and slowed me down. Yeah, I can point to each one of them and tell you their failures. But not all of them, I should be fair, The best ones were the ones that stayed out of my way. And understood what I did. If one of them came out with a book and said, “I did this and I did that” I would say ,”Fuck you.” I mean I’m the guy that said, ‘Screw it. I don’t need a clock. I’m just going to talk.’ I did it all. If any of them came out with a book

But anyway, I found it a little bit obnoxious. By the way, who wants to hear about being gay, from an 80 year old guy with his balls hanging down to his feet. He can teabag his lover without sitting down.

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