AUSTRALIA – Musician Kate Miller-Heidke has revealed that she was sexually abused as a child by her great-grandfather, saying she had felt inspired by activists Grace Tame and Brittany Higgins and musician Jaguar Jonze to share her story with the world.
In a statement published on Thursday morning, Miller-Heidke wrote of the abuse while announcing a reissue of her recent song You Can’t Hurt Me Anymore as a duet with Jonze, an outspoken campaigner against sexual misconduct.
“I usually say this song is about dancing on the grave of an arsehole,” Miller-Heidke wrote. “My latest album Child in Reverse is about childhood. One thing that happened to me when I was a very young child (from the ages of 4-6) was that I was sexually abused by my great grandfather Archibald Barnes. He was a paedophile and a serial offender. I wasn’t the first or the last. (Although obviously my family didn’t know it at the time, and didn’t find out until some years later.)
“This song is about how I felt when he died. Ultimately it’s a really empowering song to sing.”
The 40-year-old singer said she felt she could now speak out because of “the examples of Grace Tame and Brittany Higgins”, but called Jonze “the most important inspiration”.
Miller-Heidke said she spoke to Jonze the morning she wrote You Can’t Hurt Me Anymore, which was first released in October but has now been remixed to become a duet between the two women.
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