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Jewel Addresses Kevin Costner Romance Speculation: ‘My Happiness Isn’t Defined by a Man

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The Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, 49, opened up about her romantic life and her experiences with “men in positions of power” over the decades as a musician in an interview with People magazine ahead of the opening of her immersive art exhibit, “The Portal: An Art Experience by Jewel,” in Arkansas.

Reflecting on her relationship with Sean Penn in the mid-’90s, the songstress revealed that she’d refrained at the time from using their romance to promote her music following the release of her debut album, “Pieces of You.”

“Even when I was dating Sean really early on, nobody knew I was dating him. I wouldn’t do a red carpet with him. I was just very prideful,” she told People. “I wasn’t famous and my album was flopping — like, failing spectacularly. I remember going to the Venice Film Festival with him, and I could have done the red carpet and received a lot of media attention.”

She continued, “People would’ve said, ‘Who is this girl?’ and I could have plugged my album. But I’d rather be unknown the rest of my life than have that be the way the world was introduced to me. I don’t need fame that badly. I need to be fulfilled. I need to be happy. I need to be a songwriter. I wasn’t thirsty in that way.”

Jewel reflected on the tough times she’d gone through in her 20s, including how she was fired after refusing her boss’ sexual advances and when she had her car stolen, leaving her homeless. She’s previously been open about experiencing abuse from her father during her childhood, as well as harassment as a young performer.
“It was a violent era, but the Hells Angels actually were very protective over me. But there’s still violence,” she recalled. “It was men in positions of power from TV networks to record labels, and women faced it every day.”

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Jewel reveals ‘divorce wasn’t easy’ and responds to Kevin Costner romance speculation

In 2008, Jewely married rodeo star Ty Murray, and the two share a son, Kase. The couple divorced in 2014, leading the Alaskan singer to prioritize parenting over her career.

“The divorce wasn’t easy. Choosing not to work for seven years wasn’t easy. Choosing to build something else other than music wasn’t easy,” she told People. “Divorces… you have so much grief, and it’s hard. Not wanting to let go of that dream kept me in a marriage much longer than I probably should have.”

Then in 2022, she released her first new album in seven years, “Freewheelin’ Woman.”

25 years of ‘Pieces of You’: Jewel on touring with Bob Dylan, Sean Penn romance

“It’s hard to write pop songs that aren’t romantic,” Jewel told USA TODAY that year. “I was proud of ‘Intuition’ for that – it delivered a deeper concept wrapped in a pop song. Dancing and singing are my keys to life.”

Fast forward to 2024, and several media outlets have speculated about a budding romance between Jewel and “Yellowstone” actor Kevin Costner, whose divorce from his wife of almost two decades, Christine Baumgartner, was recently finalized.

But that’s not something the singer is interested in discussing.

“I found love, and I’m not talking about Kevin’s. I’m so happy, irrelevant of a man. It has nothing to do with being in a relationship or not being in one,” she told People. “I’m more inspired now than I’ve ever been in my life. The most since I was like 19 or 20 years old.

“I’m just happy.”

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