The toughest thing you’ll read this week: Duffy’s ordeal

About a decade ago, I found Duffy, a great British singer-songwriter with this great single.

But shortly thereafter, Duffy disappeared. Given the high turnover of music, I didn’t give this much thought. I did, however, keep “Mercy” on one of my running playlists.

It turns out that Duffy had been drugged, kidnapped, imprisoned, and repeatedly raped. She eventually escaped, but it’s taken until now for her to come forward with her story.

Over the weekend, she published this for all to read. Careful, though, because it’s pretty intense.

The 5th House

It troubles me that this story contains sorrow, when so many need the opposite of that at this time. I can only hope that my words serve as a momentary distraction or maybe even some comfort that one can come out of darkness.

We are in troubling times, where we’ve not seen such national and global worry since World War II. Now, it’s more important than ever to think about the impact we have on each other.

There will be great change to come from our shared crisis, a renewed understanding and appreciation of freedom and human connection but nothing comforts loss, only time.

I’m not an academic or public speaker but I have to mention our current crisis. These are tragic days. Like you I worry about relatives, loved ones and colleagues. Our tears are shared. The only cure now is prevention, by staying in and allowing the frontline workers to cope.

I could have decided to not release further words during these times, I don’t think there is ever a right time, since promising to follow up in due course.

If you are reading this, I must warn you it contains information some may find upsetting. This story is not going anywhere, it will remain online, if you are not able to take on someone else’s suffering or the recounting of such, I recommend you do not read on.

For me, in these hours I recall the words of Maya Angelou who once said, “there is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you” and I share mine with you today.

The rest of her open letter can be found here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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