James Blunt pens open letter to ‘classist gimp’ MP

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James Blunt pens open letter to ‘classist gimp’ MP

A spat between Chris Bryant an MP for Rhondda, a small Welsh constituency, has been made public with a series of open letters.

The argument being one of class and upbringing paving the way for privilege and influence on the art world. 

It started when Mr Bryant, the Labor Shadow Minister for the Arts, said to the Guardian with reference to the Golden Globe awards.

"I am delighted that Eddie Redmayne won [a Golden Globe for Best Actor], but we can't just have a culture dominated by Eddie Redmayne and James Blunt and their ilk.”

Both Eddie Redmayne and James Blunt were both privately educated and studied at Cambridge.

Mr Bryant has said his priorities as the Shadow Arts Minister is to make the Arts accessible and and fairer for all backgrounds and walks of life.

James Blunt has hit back after the back-handed comment from the politician wrote in an open letter:

“You classist gimp. I happened to go to a boarding school. No one helped me at boarding school to get into the music business. I bought my first guitar with money I saved from holiday jobs.

“Every step of the way, my background has been AGAINST me succeeding in the music business. And when I have managed to break through, I was STILL scoffed at for being too posh for the industry.

“And then you come along, looking for votes, telling working class people that posh people like me don’t deserve it, and that we must redress the balance. But it is your populist, envy-based, vote-hunting ideas which make our country crap, far more than me and my s--t songs, and my plummy accent.”

Christ Bryant then retaliated in an open letter:

“Stop being so blooming precious. I’m not knocking your success. I even contributed to it by buying one of your albums.

“’I’m delighted you’ve done well for yourself. But it is really tough forging a career in the arts if you can’t afford the enormous fees for drama school, if you don’t know anybody who can give you a leg up.

“That’s why we need more diversity at every level in the arts – in education, in training, on-screen, on stage and backstage – and we need to break down all the barriers to taking part so that every talent gets a chance.  Yours bluntly, Chris”

Journalist Bobby Friedman joined Wake Up London to discuss this public rift.

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