Multiple women, including fellow recording artists Mandy Moore and Phoebe Bridgers, accused Ryan Adams of a pattern of sexual misconduct and psychological abuse in a lengthy New York Times report published Wednesday. Not long before the piece went up, as some have noted in its wake, Adams seemingly got wind of the impending publication and sent out an ominous tweet in which he told the Times he would take them down. "Let's learn I bait," he wrote in the quickly deleted tweet.
Then, Wednesday night, Adams shared a much different response to the article's allegations in a series of tweets that remained live at the time of this writing. "I am not a perfect man and I have made many mistakes," Adams wrote. "To anyone I have ever hurt, however unintentionally, I apologize deeply and unreservedly."
Adams went out to question some of the article's details as "misrepresented," "exaggerated," or "outright false." The only specific accusation he disputed, however, centers on allegations that he engaged in sexual conversations with a woman who was underage at the time.
In the Times piece, which cites their review of more than 3,000 texts exchanged over a nine-month period, Adams is alleged to have dangled career prospects at the now-20-year-old woman throughout the conversations and—at one point during a Skype session—exposed himself:
“I never see pics of you anymore,” Adams wrote in November 2014, when he had just turned 40 and Ava was newly 16. “You were blowing my mind.” He had pet names for her body parts.
Days later, Adams expressed anxiety: “If people knew they would say I was like R Kelley lol,” he wrote.
The dangling of career prospects while pursuing women sexually is a pattern alleged by seven women in the piece. Bridgers said her former romance with Adams quickly turned "emotionally abusive" by way of harassing texts, suicide threats, and—when she ended the relationship—rescinded tour and music offers. Moore, who was married to Adams for seven years, detailed a similar pattern of alleged behavior.
"What you experience with him—the treatment, the destructive, manic sort of back and forth behavior—feels so exclusive," Moore said. "You feel like there's no way other people have been treated like this." Read the full piece here.
Following the article's publication, many have taken issue with Adams' response to the piece while pointing to a systemic problem in the music industry that allows such alleged behavior to continue. "Every couple of months, something happens where, like, a dude in my periphery will make a very visible misstep, or say something inappropriate and, like, you have to feel comfortable calling people out. Always," she said.