Usher bars men from tour

Usher awaits the inevitable sex discrimination lawsuit.
Usher awaits the inevitable sex discrimination lawsuit.

Times are tough in the music industry, so you might assume that most artists would be desperate to get anyone through the doors to see their shows. R&B star Usher clearly isn't 'most artists', though, as he's reported to be planning a series of gigs at which only women will be admitted.

The singer, who scored a big hit earlier this year with the GarageBand-influenced Love In This Club, is apparently planning a 15-date One Night Stand tour in support of new album Here I Stand. If you're a chap, though, you won't be able to get in.

Usher isn't the only artist to impose restrictions on who can attend a show - George Michael performed a free concert for NHS-registered nurses, and Boy George played exclusively for New York City's street cleaners - but as far as we know, he's the first to do so on the basis of gender.

Explaining his decision to Associated Press, Usher said: "I feel like I've had such a connection with my audience. This album, I felt like, was definitely the type of one that was more intimate. So what better way to get up close and personal than to make it all women?"

What better way indeed, and Usher clearly believes that his female fans will be keen to come along. "The ladies like to see that masculine build," he says. "They question if I still got it."

Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.