For years, R. Kelly has been the butt of many jokes for the fact he pretty much ignores being accused of vile acts like rape, sex with minors, participating in child pornography and more. They’ve hung over his ultra-successful music career, but only like a scattered rain cloud rather than a tornado. When it comes to R. Kelly, many people look beyond his past because: 1) he was acquitted of his charges and, 2) well, he himself looks past it.
Last month, Kells agreed to sit down with the Huffington Post for a live Q&A, with Twitter being the main source of questions. Within 10 minutes, R. Kelly and the host conflicted about Kelly’s honesty because the singer didn’t want to answer “negative” questions about his life that he deemed irrelevant now. If there was a fire already ignited on the issue, this event added a bit of kerosene.
Wednesday morning, though, GQ released a profile/interview of R. Kelly, where he, according to the magazine, “agreed to speak about his whole life without restrictions.”
Throughout the interview, Kelly discussed his life from growing up in Chicago, through the sex-related crimes and beyond. He talked about Bill Cosby, getting abused as a child and more. Check out snippets below.
On growing up feeling like an outcast, fatherless:
“I felt like an alien, I felt like an outcast. I felt like, ‘What is going to happen to me?’ My mother couldn’t answer it. My stepfather wasn’t really interested in it one way or another.” …If I could change anything, I would definitely have had a father around. My father. I would definitely say it affected me deeply as a young man, coming up. Who doesn’t want a father?”
On being sexually abused as a child:
“I remember it feeling weird. I remember feeling ashamed. I remember closing my eyes or keeping my hands over my eyes. I remember those things, but couldn’t judge it one way or the other fully.” … “It became a regular thing. Every other day, every other week.” … “[Sexual abuse] teaches you to definitely be sexual earlier than you should have, than you’re supposed to. You know, no different than putting a loaded gun in a kid’s hand—he gonna grow up being a shooter, probably.”
On his relationship with Aaliyah:
“Uh, I would describe it as best friends. Deep friends. As far as we both loved music and wanted to be successful.” … “I would say I was in love with Aaliyah just like I was in love with anybody else. But in a different, friend type of way.” … “You know, I tell you this: I know Aaliyah’s not here and can’t speak for herself, but there was a time that she was plenty here, after that rumor and all of that stuff started. Plenty grown. She was 22 and could speak for herself. Her mother, her father, anybody else, could speak and say whatever they wanted.”
There was a super weird, avoiding conversation about the video of R. Kelly *allegedly* peeing on a girl, but this more or less closed the convo:
“[pause] Because of my lawyers, to this day I cannot have those kind of conversations. Being advised by my lawyers in this.”
He also said he didn’t know who Dave Chappelle (who hilariously and famously made fun of R. Kelly and his urination accusation) is. Read the whole thing, but yeah…:
“David Chappelle? [as though trying to place the name] David Chappelle? I don’t…”
After explaining he’s been a fan of Bill Cosby and his situation being brought up:
“It’s strange. Strange is strange. I can’t explain strange. That’s why strange is strange. Because it’s something we can’t explain.”
There’s so much in this interview, and you can read it all at GQ’s website. Please do.