POP star Max Odell fell for dodgy financial advice as his band took off and ended up defrauding the benefit system of almost £8,000.
The 'starry eyed' young songster - whose band Manchild's late '90s success coaxed Stereophonics frontman Kelly Jones onboard - continued to claim the dole even after signing a deal with London-based One Little Indian Records.
Odell, of Arabella Street, Roath, Cardiff, pleaded guilty to four charges of deception and asked that another 52 be taken into consideration at Cardiff Magistrates' Court.
Prosecuting, Jonathan Holmes said that advances given to the band should have been declared when Odell made his fortnightly appearance at the Job Centre.
"His declarations were false because he failed to notify the department that he was working," he said.
Odell - who is said to have defrauded the state of £7,912.29 over three and a half years - was defended by Sarah Grace, who told how he had dreamed of becoming a pop star as a child and was told that it was okay to claim by an 'unsavoury' record company professional who had since been jailed.
"[At one stage] he did realise that all was probably not well with the advice he had been given," she said.
"But due to a lack of confidence he did not do anything, despite his misgivings."
Odell, who owns his own home, now works part time promoting new musical talent at Fly Studios on Albany Road, Roath, Cardiff, and temps in Cardiff offices for the agency Office Angels.