Britney Spears has released a lengthy 22-minute audio rant accusing her parents of abuse, saying they set up their controversial conservatorship over her after being introduced to the idea by an unidentified woman.
The 40-year-old singer posted the rambling recording to YouTube Sunday night in a video that has since been made private, offering new details on the controversial arrangement that ended last April after more than 15 years.
The clip features Spears speaking at length about her experiences during this time, offering a chronological account of the events that led her to being placed into the conservatorship – in which her father Jamie controlled her decisions and finances.
It also sees the Oops! I Did It Again songstress – who recently deleted her Instagram – allege that her 2008 forced hospitalization was pre-meditated, and the product of a plot to take control of her millions.
Perhaps most surprisingly, though, the de facto public service announcement saw Spears, who is currently in the midst of an explosive and highly-public row with her ex-husband Kevin Federline, say that she did not have drugs or alcohol in her system prior to her hospitalization – as it was previously claimed.
It comes days after the embattled pop star made her first foray back into the music business last Friday with Elton John in the duet Hold Me Closer, and almost half a year before a judge freed her from father’s figurative vise.
Britney Spears, seen here with her parents Lynne and Jamie, has released a lengthy 22-minute audio rant accusing her parents of abuse, saying they set up their controversial conservatorship over her after being introduced to the idea by an unidentified woman
The clip begins with Spears explaining that she’s had ‘tons of opportunities’ to share her story – including a lucrative offer from Oprah Winfrey – But that she thinks it is ‘silly’ to get paid to open up about her hardships – spurring her to post the tell-all.
She added that she had hesitated to share her story sooner since being released from her conservatorship earlier in the year, out of fear of being judged or reprimanded, and was now ‘confident’ enough to tell the world.
She described being ‘punished’ by her abusive father, Jamie, with the conservatorship in 2008 when she was 25, nearly a decade after the Louisiana native thrust to superstardom with her music career after what she called an abusive childhood.
Under the oppressive arrangement – which she said was pressed on her after she spoke to one of her psychiatrists in a British accent – Spears recalled how she ‘was not allowed to see anyone’ and a was a virtual prisoner within her own home.
‘Holy s***!’ Britney Spears reacts to her duet with Elton John reaching number one in 40 countries via Twitter video… after deleting her Instagram AGAIN
Britney Spears exclaimed: ‘HOLY S***!’ on Twitter after her first new single in six years reportedly topped the iTunes charts in 40 countries.
The single – a collaboration with Sir Elton John – is entitled Hold Me Closer, and mixes his 1971 hit Tiny Dancer with his 1992 song The One, as well as parts of Don’t Go Breaking My Heart from 1976.
Less than a day after the new song dropped, Britney, 40, tweeted a video filmed in the bath in which she playfully put on an English accent and said: ‘Hello, Sir Elton John, we are like number one in 40 countries.’
Stunned: Britney Spears exclaimed: ‘HOLY S***!’ on Twitter after her first new single in six years reportedly topped the iTunes charts in 40 countries
She then lapsed back into her natural American accent to excitedly yell: ‘HOLY S***!’ before reverting to the English accent to say with a wink: ‘I’m in the tub right now, and I’m about to go have the best day ever and I hope you’re well.’
Her video came as the New York Daily News reported Hold Me Closer had rocketed to number one on iTunes in 40 countries within hours of its release.
Britney deleted her Instagram page when the song dropped, but she has been posting celebratory videos on Twitter in the wake of its success.
In one new clip, she could be seen sitting cross legged at the edge of the bath, apparently nude except for a towel draped across her lap.
To her duet partner: She tweeted a video filmed in the bath in which she playfully put on an English accent and said: ‘Hello, Sir Elton John, we are like number one in 40 countries’
Social media maven: Britney deleted her Instagram page when the song dropped, but she has been posting celebratory videos on Twitter in the wake of its success
She also had herself filmed smiling and waving while strutting through a hallway as her and Sir Elton’s new song played.
Britney was decked out in a chic ensemble including a monochrome wrap coat, a matching pair of sunglasses and a summery straw hat.
‘Keep smiling folks … KEEP SMILING!!!’ the Womanizer singer wrote above the video, adding: ‘Psss I LOVE YOU ALL !!!’
Sizzling sensation: In one new clip, she could be seen sitting cross legged at the edge of the bath, apparently nude except for a towel draped across her lap
Promo: She also had herself filmed smiling and waving while strutting through a hallway as her and Sir Elton’s new song played
Looking fab: ‘Keep smiling folks … KEEP SMILING!!!’ the Womanizer singer wrote above the video, adding: ‘Psss I LOVE YOU ALL !!!’
As delighted fans rushed to Twitter to praise the tune, Sir Elton, 75, revealed he hoped the single would be a hit in order to restore Britney’s confidence and inspire her to keep making music.
Ahead of the single being released at midnight on Thursday, the British singer admitted he could relate to Britney, 40, being ‘broken’ and revealed that it had been a struggle to work together as Britney had understandably been ‘fearful’ to return to music following the end of her 13-year conservatorship at the hands of her father Jamie.
Sir Elton told The Guardian: ‘It’s hard when you’re young. Britney was broken. I was broken when I got sober. I was in a terrible place. Now, I’ve got the experience to be able to advise people and help them because I don’t want to see any artists in a dark place.
‘Britney was broken and fearful’: Elton John has said he hopes new single with Spears will ‘restore her confidence’ – as fans go wild for starlet’s first song in SIX years
He added that Britney had to approve the music, explaining: ‘She’s been away so long – there’s a lot of fear there, because she’s been betrayed so many times and she hasn’t really been in the public eye officially for so long.
‘We’ve been holding her hand through the whole process, reassuring her that everything’s gonna be all right.’
The Crocodile Rock singer went on to blast the conservatorship she was under, noting ‘What happened to her shouldn’t have happened to anybody.’
Tune: The single – a collaboration with Sir Elton John – is entitled Hold Me Closer, and mixes his 1971 hit Tiny Dancer with his 1992 song The One, while parts of Don’t Go Breaking My Heart from 1976 also feature in the track
No doubt the outpouring of love and support from the singer’s fans will aid in restoring her confidence, with Hold Me Closer rocketing to the top of the music charts within hour of its release.
Taking to Twitter to praise the collaboration, fans penned: ‘I just heard #HoldMeCloser for the first time. Britney you sound so beautiful and I am so proud of you, your fans will be with you and ALWAYS!’; ‘finally can officially say it… NEW BRITNEY SPEARS MUSIC. #HoldMeCloser’;
‘Hold Me Closer represents Britney joining Elton John at a moment when she’s with no confidence, but he took her hand and showed that she is actually ready to take her place back. #HoldMeCloser @britneyspears @eltonofficial’; ‘It’s perfect, @britneyspears #HoldMeCloser’;
‘Happy Britney day!!!! Currently at number 1 on uk iTunes welcome back my queen #HoldMeCloser’; ‘NUMBER 1 ON THE US ITUNES CHARTS SO SO DESERVED #HoldMeCloser’; ‘i’m so excited to support #HoldMeCloser for britney now that she has full creative control. she deserves to see how much we’re there for her and the amount of love we have for her without a doubt
‘I know my favorite adlib is gone from the final version but the production is so much better it really makes up for it. Plus there are several others that stayed and continue to bless our ears. This song is honestly so good, I’m OBSESSED. #HoldMeCloser’;
‘#HoldMeCloser is so beautiful! I got emotional listening to @britneyspears vocals. She is so resilient and strong, you can feel it through her voice! Thinking about the things she went through and yet she still POWERFUL as ever! ❤️ I LOVE U’;
‘6 years ago to the day Britney dropped her last body of work ‘Glory’, and shortly after embarked on one of the most difficult chapters of her life: gaining her freedom. Now shes returned to music with a stellar bop alongside another legend, Elton John, we MUST stan. #HoldMeCloser [sic]’.
While fans were delighted by the new music, critics were polarised, with The Telegraph’s Neil McCormick awarding the single just one star, penning: ‘Cobbled together from two far better songs, it’s a dreamy little wisp of a thing that plays to neither of their strengths and coasts along on novelty value alone.’
The Guardian’s Michael Cragg gave the tune four stars, however, writing: ‘For diehard Spears fans, or indeed anyone with a passing knowledge of one of the most distinctive pop vocalists of all time, hearing her sing again feels like a real moment.’
Shortly after the song hit streaming platforms, Britney’s husband Sam Asghari took to Instagram to show support and to express just how ‘proud’ he is of Spears.
‘Words can’t describe how f****ing proud I am!’ he wrote atop a screenshot of Hold Me Closer actively playing on his iPhone. Another shot showed the 28-year-old actor playing the track through his car’s sound system.
Britney and Sam wed in June after five years of dating. Coincidentally, the duo met on set of the music video she filmed for her song Slumber Party – which would be her last until her latest release.
Along with the support of those closest to her, Britney took it upon herself to promote Hold Me Closer to her fans ahead of its premiere.
She published three tweets to her Twitter account on Wednesday, which marked her first use of the account since June 15.
Supportive spouse: Shortly after the song hit streaming platforms, Britney’s husband Sam Asghari took to Instagram to show support and to express just how ‘proud’ he is of Spears
‘Words can’t describe how f****ing proud I am!’ he wrote atop a screenshot of Hold Me Closer actively playing on his iPhone
Louder! In another shot, it showed the 28-year-old actor playing the track through his car’s sound system
She wrote: ‘Okie dokie … my first song in 6 years !!!! It’s pretty damn cool that I’m singing with one of the most classic men of our time … @eltonofficial!!!! I’m kinda overwhelmed… it’s a big deal to me!!!’
Britney added that she is ‘meditating more and learning [her] space is valuable and precious!!!’ adding she is ‘learning everyday is a clean slate to try and be a better person and do what makes me happy,’ adding, ‘yes I choose happiness today.’
She went on to say she’s looking to gain more confidence, penning, ‘I want to be fearless like when I was younger and not be so scared and fearful.’
She added: ‘I pray there actually is truth to the Holy Spirit and I hope that spirit is with my children as well!!! Yes … I choose happiness and joy today!!!’
Page Six reported last month that Britney had joined up with the English singer and composer in Beverly Hills to record the track, which first appeared on his 1971 album Madman Across The Water.
Feeling good: Along with the support of those closest to her, Britney took it upon herself to promote Hold Me Closer to her fans ahead of its premiere
Elton appears to be the one who came up with the idea of the collaboration, but it seems to be an ideal soft launch for Britney to reinvigorate her musical career after staying silent in the final years of her now-defunct conservatorship.
‘This was Elton’s idea, and Britney is a huge fan. They have recorded a remix of Tiny Dancer as a full duet — and it is incredible,’ a music industry insider told the outlet.
The source added that Britney traveled to a studio located in Beverly Hills with Elton to record the song out of the public eye which was ‘overseen by uber-producer Andrew Watt.’
Watt has worked with several high-profile pop and rock acts — including Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Camilla Cabello and Pearl Jam — and he has collaborated multiple times with Elton, which suggests he would be an ideal pick for the two artists.
According to the source, Britney and Elton’s new single is already a hit with record company executives.
‘They’ve already played it for people at their record label, and everybody is freaking out. It is so good,’ they gushed. ‘They are saying this is going to be the song of the summer.
‘Britney is officially back,’ they added. ‘She’s back to work, and she’s super excited.’
‘She truly is an icon, one of the all-time great pop stars and she sounds amazing on this record. I love her dearly and am delighted with what we’ve created together,’ Elton said in a statement.
Britney, in her statement, told Elton it was an honor to be asked, saying: ‘I am so grateful that I got the opportunity to work with you and your legendary mind.’
Elton and Britney first met in 2014 at an Oscars party and she later tweeted her love of Tiny Dancer, sowing the seeds for the latest collaboration.