She Wants To Be Alone

Seemingly echoing the words of famous film femme fatale Greta Garbo, runaway jazz singer Madeleine Peyroux says she wants to be alone, according to her record company.

Universal Classics and Jazz representatives said she is refusing to do any more promotion for her Careless Love record, currently at No. 7 in the U.K. album chart.

The company hired a private investigator to find her when she “disappeared” after an appearance on the BBC’s “Breakfast” programme August 10th.

Bill Holland of Universal Classics and Jazz confirmed the gumshoe tracked her down very quickly: “Much to our embarrassment, she was with her manager in New York,” he told BBC News.

He claimed Peyroux’s manager said she wants everyone to “go away and leave her alone.”

The Guardian quoted manager Cynthia Herbst as saying the whole situation was bogus and that she is demanding an apology and retraction from the record company.

“We never, ever publish lies to the press and this has all been lies,” Herbst said. “Madeleine is feeling really disappointed that anybody at Universal would do this. We’re not going to the battle ground, but we’re taking the high ground.”

Peyroux has shown signs of publicity shyness in the past. She spent several years busking in Paris after the release of her debut album, Dreamland, in 1996.

She’s scheduled to play a series of September dates in the U.S., including an appearance at the Monterey Jazz Festival, as well as fall dates in the U.K. and South America.

Peace and quiet may prove hard for Peyroux to find: According to a recent report in The Independent, the singer is embroiled in a bitter and long-running legal battle with a former boyfriend and musical collaborator, who claims he “discovered” her singing in a bar.

The case is being brought by musician William Galison amid claims of physical abuse, harassment, libel and thwarted ambition. It’s expected to be heard at the Federal Court in New York City next month. Galison is claiming $1 million (£555,000) in damages resulting from the split with Peyroux.

The dispute centres on the recording of a seven-track CD entitled Got You On My Mind in March 2003, shortly before Peyroux signed with Universal.

Galison told the paper, “We were romantically involved. She lived with me, she was eating my food. We had an amazing act, but suddenly she stopped working with me.”

– John Gammon / Pollstar