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Tyga is a Creepy Predator, But He’s Hardly the First Creepy Predator in the Music Biz

Tyga and Kylie Jenner
Tyga and Kylie Jenner

It’s not exactly news at this point that the rapper known as Tyga is, as a rather self-explanatory headline in The Daily Beast put it yesterday, “a Creepy Predator Who Is Attracted to Underage Girls.”

As the Daily Beast’s Marlow Stern points out, the rapper famously started dating Kylie Jenner when she was 17 — officially “jailbait” in the state of California, where she lives — and defended the, er, romance in a song featuring one of the creepiest couplets in the history of lyrics:

They say she young, I should’ve waited

She a big girl, dog, when she stimulated.

This star-crossed romance got even skeezier last month, with tabloids reporting that while Tyga was dating Jenner he was also creeping on an even-more-underage girl online — a 14-year-old “Instagram model.”

In a press conference on Monday, with attorney Gloria Allred by her side, the girl in question — identifying herself as Molly O’Malia.– told her side of the story, saying that Tyga had approached her online, sending her messages on Instagram and trying to convince her to meet in person.

If her story is true, Stern notes, it

shows that Tyga is a predator with considerable means and influence who targets underage girls, just as he did with a teenage Kylie Jenner. And the public—and tabloid media—shouldn’t laugh off this despicable behavior any longer. It’s this lack of seriousness and accountability that’s allowed a demon like R. Kelly to continue to flourish, despite the countless young girls he’s left violated and forgotten.

Unfortunately, as the mention of the henious R. Kelly reminds us, Tyga is hardly the first predatory pop star. And in most cases, the media has been content to trivialize the issue or simply look the other way.

Sure, rocker Jerry Lee Lewis famously faced a backlash after journalists discovered that he had married a 13-year-old girl who also happened to be his first cousin once removed.

But Elvis Presley somehow managed to avoid this sort of scandal even while he was actively pursuing Priscilla Beaulieu, whom he met when she was only 14. The two eventually married in 1967 after what Biography.com euphemistically describes as a “nearly eight-year courtship.” According to assorted biographers, Elvis was positively obsessed with girls in their early teens. The official story, for what it’s worth, is that the singer didn’t actually have sex with any of them, preferring pillow fights and girly gossip.

Elvis wasn’t the first or the last pop star obsessed with underage girls; most had a lot more than pillow fights in mind. In a spoken-word section of the 1977 Kiss song “Christine Sixteen,” Gene Simmons declares

I don’t usually say things like this to girls your age, but when I saw you comin’ out of school that day, that day I knew, I knew I got to have ya. I got to have ya!

But it hasn’t been just rock ‘n’ roll sleazebags like Simmons who have advertised their interest in underage girls. The Knack’s “My Sharona” was about a real-life 17-year-old who was dating one of the band members; the group returned to the topic of underage girls in another song,“That’s What The Little Girls Do,” which laments how these “little girls” allegedly torment older men, breaking both their egos and their hearts. Oh, and the album that followed the massive hit Get The Knack was titled “But the Little Girls Understand.”

The list goes on and on. There’s Foreigner’s “Seventeen.” There’s “Young Girl,” by Gary Puckett and the Union Gap. There’s Donovan’s “Mellow Yellow,” a surrealistic ode to yellow vibrators — and 14-year-old girls.

And then there’s Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page. He didn’t write musical love letters to 14-year-olds. No, he just sent roadies to bring them to him, no questions asked. Or at least he did on one infamous occasion in 1972. As Cracked describes the incident, Page was so taken by 14-year-old groupie Lori Maddox, whom he’d spotted in a nightclub, that he

sent roadie Richard Cole to Maddox’s table with the message, “Jimmy told me that he’s going to have you whether you like it or not.” The roadie then grabbed her and chucked her in the back of a limo, saying, “You fucking move and I’ll fucking have your head.”

Page apparently did his best to keep the three-year “romance” that followed out of the press — and Maddox herself largely confined to his hotel room.

But the story has been out for decades now, and no one seems to give a shit about it. Page is still treated as a rock god, his creepy years-long exploitation of the extremely underaged Maddox seen as little more than a colorful example of seventies rock excess.

Some might say that it’s unfair to put Tyga’s skeezy but failed online seduction of a high school junior in the same category as, say, Page’s exploitation of Maddox. He didn’t kidnap her; they never even met in person.

Indeed, two other Daily Beast writers, Lizzie Crocker and Tim Teeman, sniff that

[i]n the annals of Allred cases defending pretty girls as victims of lurid celebrity scandals, this particular scandal was hardly a scandal at all before Allred entered the fray. … 

it was not clear what made O’Malia … a victim in this case, until she had been transformed into one by Allred.

But that’s not really the point. It’s a good thing that Tyga’s pursuit of a 14-year-old is a scandal (and it definitely was one, albeit a somewhat smaller one, even before Allred got involved).

Pop stars’ exploitation of their young female fans used to be such a “normal” and expected thing in the music business that some of the rock ‘n’ roll predators not only wrote songs about it, but wrote songs in which they — shades of Humbert Humbert — made themselves out to be the victims. 

Today, Tyga is getting called out on Twitter and in the tabloids for his predatory behavior. That’s a good thing.

I only hope that Jimmy Page and R. Kelly and all those other musicians who have happily exploited underage fans will eventually be held to the same standard.

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Irene
Irene
4 years ago

A pedophile is a person afflicted with a broken, intrinsically harmful sexuality.

Quite a lot of those who rape babies/children/preteens are not “pedophiles” in that sense, though, and it doesn’t make sense to call them ephebophiles.

Jarnsaxa
Jarnsaxa
4 years ago

I would definitely caution against assuming song lyrics, poetry or stories are how a writer really feels about anything.

It’s a fairly common exercise to write a poem from someone else’s POV and the same holds true for music. PJ Harvey has never drowned a daughter, for example.

That said, a lot of these songs about underaged girls skeeve me out too, because they echo the real life behaviors. Ick.

justlikeheaven
justlikeheaven
4 years ago

So I listened to Christine Sixteen and other than being creeped out by the lyrics im always shocked by how terrible Kiss is.

Redsilkphoenix
Redsilkphoenix
4 years ago

Four pages into this Music Stars Behaving Badly thread, and not one mention of Micheal Jackson? Then again, no-one’s ever proved the pedeophile charges against him, have they? (Serious question, btw – has that ever been proved one way or the other?)

Then again, given he was literally raised in 70’s Rock culture, it’s probably not surprising that he had a very skewed view of what was appropriate behavior between adults and minors. Not that it excuses him any, just that it was hard to tell why he did a lot of the odder things he was known for, like full body wraps whenever he went outside his ranch house.

Good musician, though. Don’t think any of his works went into the skeevy realms, did it? (On the other hand, I’m only familiar with the stuff released as singles; never had a chance to buy one of his albums, for variou$ reason$.)

Kat
Kat
4 years ago

In the 1960s, Mick Jagger lived with model Chrissie Shrimpton. According to Chrissie, Mick was both controlling and a cheater. By 1966, he was remote toward her. They planned a vacation, which he canceled without telling her. Tormented by his attitude and the fact that he wouldn’t marry her, Chrissie tried to kill herself but was found in time — by whom, Chrissie still doesn’t know.

She woke up in a mental hospital. From there she was taken to a clinic, where, without explanation, they gave her sleep therapy. Every time she woke up, they would stick another needle in her and she would lose consciousness again. Finally, she managed to call her family, from whom she was estranged because she was living with Mick without being married to him.

Luckily, her father came to pick her up immediately. Once she was back at her parents’ home, she read in the papers that Mick and performer Marianne Faithfull were having an affair. When she returned to her former home, the locks had been changed.

There’s more! She got a new apartment and Mick would turn up, expecting sex. She never refused him. But if they ran into each other at parties, he would never acknowledge her. After a year, he stopped showing up at her place.

What a guy!

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2210291/I-thought-Mick-I-But-cheating-drove-overdose-Jaggers-love-Chrissie-Shrimpton-breaks-50-year-silence-start-riveting-new-series.html

And poor L’Wren Scott, his most recent love, who killed herself two years ago. The scuttlebutt at the time was that it was because he wouldn’t marry her.

And he used to lunch with Margaret Thatcher….

PinkiSyddyKitty
PinkiSyddyKitty
4 years ago

Kat
January 8, 2016 at 3:57 am

In the 1960s, Mick Jagger lived with model Chrissie Shrimpton. According to Chrissie, Mick was both controlling and a cheater. By 1966, he was remote toward her. They planned a vacation, which he canceled without telling her. Tormented by his attitude and the fact that he wouldn’t marry her, Chrissie tried to kill herself but was found in time — by whom, Chrissie still doesn’t know.

She woke up in a mental hospital. From there she was taken to a clinic, where, without explanation, they gave her sleep therapy. Every time she woke up, they would stick another needle in her and she would lose consciousness again. Finally, she managed to call her family, from whom she was estranged because she was living with Mick without being married to him.

Luckily, her father came to pick her up immediately. Once she was back at her parents’ home, she read in the papers that Mick and performer Marianne Faithfull were having an affair. When she returned to her former home, the locks had been changed.

There’s more! She got a new apartment and Mick would turn up, expecting sex. She never refused him. But if they ran into each other at parties, he would never acknowledge her. After a year, he stopped showing up at her place.

What a guy!

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2210291/I-thought-Mick-I-But-cheating-drove-overdose-Jaggers-love-Chrissie-Shrimpton-breaks-50-year-silence-start-riveting-new-series.html

And poor L’Wren Scott, his most recent love, who killed herself two years ago. The scuttlebutt at the time was that it was because he wouldn’t marry her.

And he used to lunch with Margaret Thatcher….

Wow! That’s Jabba-The-Hutt-levels of sliminess!

About my earlier comment concerning that Rundgren song. I confess that I never heard it and maybe the “stupid but fun” wasn’t referring to the woman.

That said; The Rolling Stones leave a bad taste in my mouth. Sure, there’s a few good songs but a lot of their output and the guys themselves make me want to nuke them.

About Page; I’m amazed the guy isn’t in prison. The other pervy shenanigans usually have a “consensual-ish rocker/groupie devotee” thing going for it…..but what Page did sounds more like Ariel Castro-type stuff.

As for the Beatles, at least most of their stuff wasn’t openly misogynistic and they seem somewhat repentant after a while.

Robert
Robert
4 years ago

In a novel I read years ago, one subplot was about a young pop star being admitted to a hospital for a surgical procedure. His manager tells the chief surgeon, “Remember – a lot of people are eating regularly and well because of this kid. Don’t screw it up.”

Whenever I read about real life recording artists* and their behavior, I remember that – if they are successful – they are quickly surrounded by an ever growing cauldron of people like that. The number of people who can say ‘no’ and make it stick decreases, and those who will only say ‘yes’ proliferates. If the process starts when you’re too young to drink legally, you can turn into an untouchable monster. None of this is intended to excuse the behavior, because nothing can do that. It does make me respect those who do not succumb to the lure even more.

*Somehow ‘musician’ doesn’t seem right for someone like Tyga.

TruthToPower
TruthToPower
4 years ago

This is a racist article.

Lorna
Lorna
4 years ago

Another one is Red Hot Chilli Peppers lead singer Anthony Kieidis. When he was 23 his girlfriend was 15 year old Ione Skye and he later made Jaime Rishar his girlfriend when she was 17. In his autobiography he wrote about having sex with a woman in a Marilyn Monroe dress. She told him she was 14 and he had sex with her again.