What Happened To Duffy? British Singer Says She Was Raped, Held Captive — Why She Disappeared

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What Happened To Duffy? British Singer Says She Was Raped, Held Captive — Why She Disappeared

Singer Duffy — born Aimee Anne Duffy — was born in Wales on June 23, 1984. While studying at Chester University, she was encouraged to seriously pursue singing, although she had sung in local bands as a teenager. 

In November 2007, Duffy signed with A&M Records for Europe, and shortly after inked a deal with Mercury Records as her American recording label. This led to the 2008 release of Duffy's Rockferry.

Rockferry quickly found international success as the single "Mercy" was absolute #1 hit. Beyond selling millions of albums worldwide, Rockferry also won a Grammy Award, three Brit Awards and an Ivor Novello Award, beyond winding up on countless "best of" lists from influential critics.

2010's followup album Endlessly charted and sold well in a variety of countries. However, it did not achieve anywhere near the commercial or critical success of Rockferry.

No new music has been heard from Duffy since Endlessly, which was released a decade ago. Duffy made headlines this week when she made a public statement to let people know where she's been. So ... what happened to Duffy? Below is more information about the British singer's past, present and future and why she disappeared.

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1. What happened to Duffy? 

On February 26, 2020, Duffy made an unexpected appearance on social media. As posted to Instagram, she mentioned having disappeared from the public eye following her experiencing of traumatic events.

In Duffy's direct words: "I was raped and drugged and held captive over some days. Of course I survived. The recovery took time."

2. Duffy stated that she will be participating in a tell-all interview in the near-future.

Following her recovery, Duffy was urged to come forward after connecting with a journalist last summer. In Duffy's sake, the journalist "was kind and it felt so amazing to finally speak."

It is not yet known when or where this interview will be appearing. It is also not clear whether the person — or persons — interviewing Duffy is related to the journalist she had initially been in contact with last summer.

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You can only imagine the amount of times I thought about writing this. The way I would write it, how I would feel thereafter. Well, not entirely sure why now is the right time, and what it is that feels exciting and liberating for me to talk. I cannot explain it. Many of you wonder what happened to me, where did I disappear to and why. A journalist contacted me, he found a way to reach me and I told him everything this past summer. He was kind and it felt so amazing to finally speak. The truth is, and please trust me I am ok and safe now, I was raped and drugged and held captive over some days. Of course I survived. The recovery took time. There’s no light way to say it. But I can tell you in the last decade, the thousands and thousands of days I committed to wanting to feel the sunshine in my heart again, the sun does now shine. You wonder why I did not choose to use my voice to express my pain? I did not want to show the world the sadness in my eyes. I asked myself, how can I sing from the heart if it is broken? And slowly it unbroke. In the following weeks I will be posting a spoken interview. If you have any questions I would like to answer them, in the spoken interview, if I can. I have a sacred love and sincere appreciation for your kindness over the years. You have been friends. I want to thank you for that x Duffy Please respect this is a gentle move for me to make, for myself, and I do not want any intrusion to my family. Please support me to make this a positive experience.

A post shared by @ duffy on Feb 25, 2020 at 10:12am PST

3. Duffy is welcoming fan questions for her upcoming interview.

Duffy's February 25, 2020 Instagram posting made it clear that she will be going into depth about the trauma that led to her disappearance from the public eye. She has not yet named her attacker, when it occurred or whether this scenario led to anyone being arrested or convicted.

Said directly by Duffy: "In the following weeks I will be posting a spoken interview. If you have any questions I would like to answer them, in the spoken interview, if I can."

4. Duffy had battled anxiety long before her long-term disappearance.

In a 2011 interview, Duffy made reference to taking a break from entertainment. An artist representative had put out a statement to directly state the following: “Duffy is taking a break before starting work on her next album.” There was speculation Duffy was "suffering after dumping her main songwriter and producer, ex-Suede man Bernard Butler, and the woman who discovered her, Jeanette Lee."

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Even prior to that, in a 2010 interview Duffy had stated that she had "almost walked away from music as life got complicated after first album." She had stated in 2008 that she was "borderline on a nervous breakdown"

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5. Duffy's current career path is currently unknown.

While Duffy has not released a studio album since 2010's Endlessly, she did contribute new music to the soundtracks of several films. This included The Boat That Rocked, Legend, and the Welsh film Patagonia.

Interestingly, Duffy had also appeared as an actress in two of those films, Legend (as "Timi Yuro") and Patagonia (as "Sissy"). Meanwhile, her music has been featured in recent years on The Voice, Dancing With The Stars, Good Morning Britain, Strictly Come Dancing and the film Time Of Our Lives.

Her Instagram posting on February 25, 2020 did not make any references to future performances, recordings or acting work.

6. Social media appears to be the best way to follow Duffy.

While unclear if Duffy is still signed to a record label, she does have an Instagram account. She also has an official Facebook account, although it did not include a similar posting to the one posted this week to her Instagram account.

In addition to Duffy's official Instagram account, fans can also track the singer through a variety of fan-managed Instagram accounts, including @DuffyNews.

Darren Paltrowitz is a New York-based writer, editor and author. He is also the host of the Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz podcast, as co-produced with PureGrainAudio.com.