I was in a big band from the 2000s – but from the way I was treated I’d rather down a mine than play with them again

Former Texas keyboardist Michael Bannister has claimed he was “regularly fat-shamed” during his time with the band.

The musician also said he was threatened with expulsion from the group and compared the show business industry in Scotland to the ‘Wild West’.

Michael Bannister has left the band and is now working as an MP


Michael Bannister has left the band and is now working as an MPCredit: Alamy
Sharleen Spitteri singer from Texas


Sharleen Spitteri singer from TexasPhoto credit: Getty

In an interview with the daily record, Bannister, 43, spoke about the “toxic” culture in the band and music industry.

He told the Record, “During my time at Texas, I was routinely fat-shamed, and not only was I fat-shamed, I was even threatened with losing my job if I didn’t lose weight.”

Bannister said the recent allegations against US musician Lizzo were triggering for him.

Lizzo was recently accused of creating a hostile work Environment and sexual harassment by three former dancers.

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Bannister added, “Everyone thinks it’s rock ‘n’ roll and glamorous, but it’s not.

“It’s chock-full of insecure tyrants in positions of power.”

He played with the band for 17 years before reaching his limits and is much happier now after a career change where he now works as a policy researcher for SNP MP Anne McLaughlin.

Bannister said people in the industry still get away with bullying behavior.

He added, “Texas played Glastonbury this year, but I honestly would rather have worked in a mine than be on that stage.”

“I used to do crazy diets before shows to lose weight.

“I look back now and I can’t believe I did that.

“I didn’t like who I was and I began to question why I was allowing others to treat me the way they were and what effect it was having on me.

“It was a very toxic place and I wanted to escape from that environment.”

Bannister said he actively discouraged his children from pursuing careers in the music industry to keep them from feeling the way he did.

A PR firm representing the band told the Daily Record that Bannister’s claims were “completely untrue”.

Lizzo also denied the allegations against her, saying they are “as incredible as they sound” and will not allow the good work to be “overshadowed” by the allegations.

Lizzo was recently accused of fat-shaming her backing dancers


Lizzo was recently accused of fat-shaming her backing dancersPhoto credit: AP

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Emma James

Emma James is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Emma James joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing emmajames@ustimespost.com.

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