Chris Bryant’s call for more diversity in British culture, has hit a nerve with James Blunt.
After Bryant, the new shadow culture minister, remarked that ‘we can’t just have a culture dominated by Eddie Redmayne and James Blunt and their ilk,’ the You’re Beautiful singer has responded in an open letter.
Despite initially brushing off the comments on Twitter, Blunt writes that Bryant is a ‘classist gimp’.
Really? I thought we’d got rid of me years ago. RT @ianbirrell: James Blunt is ‘dominating’ UK culture, according to Labour arts spokesman
— James Blunt (@JamesBlunt) January 18, 2015
The musician, who is married to Lord Wellesley’s daughter Sofia, claims that his Harrow education did not help him launch his music career.
‘I happened to go to a boarding school. No one helped me at boarding school to get into the music business,’ he says. ‘I bought my first guitar with money I saved from holiday jobs (sandwich packing!).’
When the 40-year-old musician left the army to pursue a singing career, one record label went so far as to suggest he change his accent.
‘When I left the army, going against everyone’s advice, EVERYONE I met in the British music industry told me there was no way it would work for me because I was too posh. One record company even asked if I could speak in a different accent. (I told them I could try Russian).’
The Labour MP hasn’t taken kindly to Blunt’s letter, responding that the musician should ‘stop being so blooming precious’ and retweeting some choice responses.
That James Blunt letter in full. “Wah wah wah. Nobody likes me. Wah wah wah. Nobody likes my music.” that’s it. Well said @ChrisBryantMP
— Paul Clarkson (@paul_clarkson1) January 19, 2015