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Tue, 30 Mar, 2021

Music legend Kamahl opens up about "terrible" experience on Hey Hey It's Saturday

Music legend Kamahl opens up about "terrible" experience on Hey Hey It's Saturday

Hey Hey It's Saturday has been under fresh scrutiny as of late after music legend Kamahl has opened up about his "terrible" experience on the show.

He spoke to Sarah Harris, Tristan MacManus and Angela Bishop on Studio 10 and said that it "hurt" being subjected to racist jokes on the variety show, pointing out that other white musicians wouldn't have been subject to the same treatment.

“They wouldn’t hit John Farnham or Jimmy Barnes in the face with a powder puff,” he said in reference to one of the show’s most shocking resurfaced skits.

The skit in question depicts Daryl Somers and off-screen partner John Blackman hitting Kamahl in the face with white powder during the show.

"You're a real white man, Kamahl," Blackman joked after the prank.

“Daryl, it’s lighting here - could you ask Kamahl to smile so we can see him?” Blackman had asked via voiceover before the performance.

Malaysian-born Kamahl, 86, said he knows why they picked on him.

“There is a reason why they did what they did.

“The reason is that I was successful … They couldn’t understand it … It’s a form of envy, jealousy, hate. It was their form of cutting the tall poppy down.”

He continued: “It hurt, of course it hurt. It’s terrible to be humiliated. I know they wouldn’t hit John Farnham or Jimmy Barnes in the face with a powder puff, but the root of it was I was too successful for them … If I was a nobody, they wouldn’t have done anything.”

“I tried not to complain, but at the end of it all, 34 years later, I’m still here, I’m still laughing.”

He also slammed John Blackman's defence of the show, explaining why he never came forward until now.

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"John Blackman wants to know why I did not make any complaints then !," Kamahl tweeted.

"Mr Blackman, you of all people know that it's all about TIMING.

"There's a time for everything !

"Why are so many people so unkind ?"