Pop Life

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap: Music Fans Love Their A-Holes

Sting. He's the artist we love to hate. From The Atlantic:

Sting, everyone's favorite somnambulant acoustic pop star, has developed a somewhat checkered experience in Central Asia. In 2009, Gulnara Karimova - herself a fledgling pop singer under the name GooGooSha and daughter of Uzbek president-for-life Islom Karimov - paid him $1.6 million to perform at a government-sponsored arts festival in Tashkent. Tickets to the concert were priced above $1,000 in the impoverished Central Asian country, and Sting later claimed, falsely, that the concert was co-sponsored by UNICEF.

One reason for the controversy is Sting's position as a spokesman for Amnesty International, contrasted with Uzbekistan's position as one of the world's worst human rights abusers. The clear hypocrisy of speaking for a human rights organization while performing under contract for a human rights abuser was, apparently not an issue for Sting, who declared that "cultural boycotts are not only pointless gestures, they are counter-productive.

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Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar