Boy George knows what it's like being Justin Bieber.
The pop music icon was just 21 years old when he shot to worldwide fame in the 1980s as the gender-bending front man of Culture Club.
"Unfortunately when you're at that age, you won't listen to anyone," the 52-year-old singer told me earlier today when he was at E! to shoot a guest spot on Fashion Police (airing tonight at 9/8c). "I did the same thing. People told me time and time again—not just at 22 but it happened up until 10 years ago—to sort of grow up a bit.
He declines to offer the 19-year-old any advice.
"It's immaturity," Boy George said of the "Boyfriend" hitmaker's many public displays of troublemaking. "It's being played out in the spotlight and I'm quite sure there will be an interview in the future where he says, 'I can't believe I did that.' Or not. I hope he makes it through.
"I think he's a gorgeous young man," he continued. "He's obviously talented, but he's sort of lost in the show biz antics of it all."
Boy George was thrust into that spotlight with Culture Club in 1982 with "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me," their hit single of the group's first album, Kissing to Be Clever.
"You're not ready for it," he said. "There's no school. It's fumbling in the dark. My attitude to life is we're all kind of clinging to a rock, basically. Some of do it better than others."
Just yesterday, Boy George announced an eight-date North American tour kicking off in April in support of his new album, This Is What I Do.
"I think I have found my footing now," he said. "I have found my little space [on the rock] where I could sit comfortably and enjoy the view."
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