In a new interview with The Telegraph, the 68-year-old show business veteran slams the 21-year-old “Love Me Harder” singer for using sex and skin to sell records. Midler, who has won three Grammys, four Golden Globes and three Emmys in her career, tells the publication that Grande and the rest of her contemporaries are doing “terrible” things to pop music these days.
“It’s always surprising to see someone like Ariana Grande with that silly high voice, a very wholesome voice, slithering around on a couch looking so ridiculous. I mean, it’s silly beyond belief and I don’t know who’s telling her to do it. I wish they’d stop,” she says. “But it’s not my business, I’m not her mother. Or her manager. Maybe they tell them that’s what you’ve got to do. Sex sells. Sex has always sold.”
Commenting about music industry these days, Midler explains,”Whatever strictures there were have fallen apart. And now it’s whatever you feel like doing you can do. I mean, apparently people really like to pretend they’re having sex. They really like to slap each other’s butts.”
“I mean, don’t ask me. It’s beyond me. I’m too old. I don’t know what the end game is going to be. I don’t know where you go from all that sex in your twenties. I don’t know how you sustain it,” she continues, adding that her advice to Grande is to “trust your talent.”
She quips, “You don’t have to make a whore out of yourself to get ahead. You really don’t.”
And Midler isn’t the only one to see it this way. In the past, "The Big Bang Theory" actress Mayim Bialik blasted Grande and expressed her distaste for the sexual nature of former Nickelodeon star’s album ads.
“There is one [billboard] for Ariana Grande, and I will go ahead and admit I have no idea who she is or what she does. Based on the billboard, she sells lingerie. Or stiletto heels. Or plastic surgery because every woman over 22 wishes she has that body, I’m sure,” Bialik penned in a blog post earlier this year. “Why is she in her underwear on this billboard though? And if she has a talent (is she a singer?), then why does she have to sell herself in lingerie?”