Lady Gaga explains "twisted" reason she worked with R. Kelly

The pop singer publicly apologized for their duet, vowing to remove it from iTunes

Lady Gaga explains "twisted" reason she worked with R. Kelly
Stars Insider

10/01/19 | StarsInsider

CELEBRITY R. Kelly

In the wake of the disturbing and heartbreaking docuseries 'Surviving R. Kelly,' which resurfaced allegations and sparked a criminal investigation, the importance of speaking out against an alleged predator and abuser is of utmost importance—especially considering that the R&B singer continues to book shows. Though some celebrities have spoken their opinions, the public has particularly been putting pressure on Lady Gaga, who worked with Kelly on her 2013 song 'Do What U Want (With My Body).'

In the early hours of January 10, the 'A Star Is Born' actress and musician posted a statement on Twitter apologizing for working with Kelly, a man who had allegations of a Harvey Weinstein proportion stacked against him, and yet felt next to no repercussions for them. "I stand by anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual assault," Gaga begins.

In the statement, she calls the allegations "absolutely horrifying and indefensible" and speaks to her own experience of sexual assault, attributing her work with Kelly to her own inability to properly deal with the trauma it caused her. 

"As a victim of sexual assault myself, I made both the song and video at a dark time in my life," she writes, "my intention was to create something extremely defiant and provocative because I was angry and still hadn't processed the trauma that had occurred in my own life."

She calls her mental process at the time "explicitly twisted," and says that if she could go back in time, she would've asked for help. "I can't go back, but I can go forward and continue to support women, men, and people of all sexual identities, and of all races, who are victims of sexual assault." Gaga subtly brings up a poignant issue at the backbone of Kelly's largely ignored allegations, which stretch as far back at marrying a 15-year-old Aaliyah when he was 27, and that is that his alleged victims were young black women and girls.

Gaga concludes by announcing that she will be removing the song from iTunes and all other streaming platforms, promising to never work with Kelly again. "I'm sorry, both for my poor judgment when I was young, and for not speaking out sooner." 

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