Miley Cyrus is clarifying remarks she made to British Vogue last week. She told the magazine she had no desire to go on tour, citing a lack of connection and safety. Yesterday, though, she took to Twitter to expand on what, exactly, she meant.


Miley says that despite thinking very often about new and different ways to connect with her audience, she “won’t be sacrificing my own essentials” in order to make that happen. She touched on things like not wanting to sleep on a moving bus, archival looks being “hard to fold” and her high-fashion looks not travelling well.

The clarification comes after she admitted that touring hasn’t really been fulfilling for her.

"Like singing for hundreds of thousands of people isn't really the thing that I love. There's no connection. There's no safety," she said during the Vogue interview. "It's also not natural. It's so isolating because if you're in front of 100,000 people then you are alone."


She went on to say that her last headline arena tour in 2014 left her questioning whether touring was something she wanted to continue doing, highlighting that it was less about capability and more about desire. Then, she posed this question, to the interviewer, the audience, and most importantly, herself:

"Do I want to live my life for anyone else’s pleasure or fulfillment other than my own?"

I love that at 30, Miley is taking a minute to ask herself that. It’s an incredibly challenging thing to do – especially considering she’s spent so much of her life in the spotlight. As much as she’s saying the idea of being alone on a stage is not natural, it sure has been her and her family’s normal. 

I also love the fact that even though she doesn’t intend on touring, she’s still making music – good, chart-topping music at that. I admire her for finding a way to do what she loves on her own terms and become more honest about what that looks like for her. 

But in the current landscape of being a music artist at a time where digital and streaming have just about depleted the ability to turn a solid profit through royalties, it’s a privilege to be able to just toy with the idea of whether to go on tour. And it’s a privilege that not all artists have. 


Right now, it feels like everyone is either on tour or has one coming up. Janet Jackson, Madonna, Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, and Shania Twain are just a few of the musicians who have hit the road in recent months. And while a lot of artists who are touring are doing it to make up for dates they were forced to cancel due to the pandemic, some are touring because they have to re-establish their economic foundation and recoup the money they lost or couldn’t make over the last few years.

In 2020, through to 2021, the entire entertainment industry was essentially brought to a screeching halt. Highly anticipated tours like Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift’s Lover Fest, Harry Styles’s Love on Tour were all postponed. Huge festivals including Stagecoach, Coachella and Lollapalooza were cancelled. 

Coupled with the pandemic, the popularity and preference for streaming and digital consumption of music means a lot of artists are struggling right now. Depending on album sales has proven to be disappointing and touring is truly one of the only dependable forms of generating revenue. 

Miley’s remarks got me thinking about Summer Walker. She’s a Black award-winning R&B singer who has been very open about her social anxiety, which has been so severe at times that she’s had to cancel concerts and tours, much to the dismay of her fans. 


In 2019, a few hours after she cancelled a tour, citing social anxiety, she posted a now-deleted video of her dancing with her boyfriend, sparking a debate over whether she actually experiences social anxiety. 

"How [is] she that comfortable letting the WORLD see her doing this but not comfortable enough to sing her own music in a coliseum?" one user wrote in the comment section.

Since then, her social anxiety and perceived lack of stage presence has been a hot topic throughout her career. She was accused of “scamming” people when this scathing review of a meet and greet was posted, to which the person who posted it shared a follow up response suggesting that “nobody with social anxiety chooses to be famous.”

It’s an incredibly ignorant assumption to make that one cannot want to share their talent with the world but also be absolutely and positively petrified at the very thought or act of doing so. Especially considering the amount of stars we’ve seen share similar sentiments to both Miley, who expresses what seems to be a lack of interest and touring, and Summer, who cites a very real mental health condition.


In recent years, we’ve seen stars like Naomi Osaka, Justin Bieber, Emma Watson, Simone Biles and so many others prioritizing their mental health in ways we haven’t seen before. Sometimes that looks like staying off of social media, cancelling games, concerts, tours or appearances, or simply doing what Miley is doing – making more choices that align with what they want for themselves.

The difference between Miley and Summer is that Miley was born into a famous family and has an estimated net worth of $160 million. Summer, on the other hand, had a humble rise to fame and sits at an estimated net worth of $4 million. Plus, she has two kids to care for and she’s a single mom. She’s had to start performing in front of crowds again, not because she enjoys it but because that’s how she feeds her kids. 

That’s why it’s a privilege that Miley can even explore the possibility of making music without touring. The financial impact of that is much less felt for her than it would be for someone like Summer, who has had to continue performing in front of crowds despite the ways it disrupts her peace and what that looks like physically, which, according to her, includes breaking out in sweats, hives and body shakes.

It's my hope that we’ll see more stars get honest about how they want to show up as artists. Maybe we’ll see more virtual concerts, like we did during the pandemic. And maybe there will be a way to monetize them so that stars do get to earn something for their art while finding meaningful connection to those who appreciate it.