Tag : party

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Post Malone Responds To "Rockstar" Chart Controversy

Post Malone has addressed the questions about the authenticity his first #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100. After multiple reports noted how a loop video for “Rockstar” on YouTube may have been used to game the system, Malone fired back by dismissing the controversy — specifically targeting a tweet and article by SPIN.

“Well the song is good so probably not the only reason why,” he tweeted on Tuesday (October 17) in response to SPIN tweet about the loop video.

Malone also expressed frustration with the doubt surrounding his 21 Savage-assisted single’s success.

“Whenever you live your dreams everyone wants to try to take it away from you,” he wrote later on Tuesday.

Republic Records, Malone’s label and the party that uploaded the video in question, hasn’t issued any statement or comment on the controversy.

(The original version this article was published on October 18, 2017 and can found below.)

Post Malone is allegedly reaping the benefits a curious YouTube video uploaded by his label, Republic Records, last month. According to The FADER, Republic may have used a loophole in order to help Malone’s new single reach #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The labeling the video would lead a viewer to believe it’s the full song for his 21 Savage-assisted record, “Rockstar.” Instead, the video is a loop the chorus featured on the song. 21 Savage’s verse is absent from the audio.

Additionally, the description the video reads “FULL SONG HERE,” and includes a link to the various streaming options for the song.

As Wednesday (October 18), a view count for the YouTube video stands at over 44 million. The comments for the YouTube video have been disabled.

It’s currently unclear just how big a role the video loop played in “Rockstar” obtaining the #1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart this past week. In a statement to Genius, Billboard said, “U.S. streams for that clip do contribute to our songs charts, the same way an instrumental track or a remix a song would count towards the main song’s placement if downloaded or streamed.”

Regardless, the song is a bonafide hit, and has been topping the daily Spotify charts for more than a week with millions plays.

But Republic’s video has caught even more attention given that YouTube streams will reportedly soon be taken into consideration for the Billboard 200 albums chart.

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Every Hip-Hop Artist With Over 1 Million Monthly Spotify Listeners

In March, Spotify reached the 50 million paid subscriber plateau. Along with their unpaid user base, the most popular streaming platform in the world currently boasts over 100 million active users. Though a vast number hip-hop fans prefer competing subscription services like Apple Music (because its exclusives) and TIDAL (because Jay Z) over Spotify, not to mention free options like Audiomack and SoundCloud, Spotify will likely remain the king the streaming castle for the foreseeable future. 

Spotify owes its success to a number factors, most notably a clean user interface and an expansive music library—save for most Jay Z's catalog, along with Dr. Dre and a handful others—but its music curation, millions playlists and daily updated charts are undoubtedly what has helped the platform grow over time while retaining its user base.

One chart that doesn't exist, though, is a ranked list all artists by monthly listeners, which is one the several metrics, along with total plays and plays by country, that is made available to the public. (It's important to note that neither Apple Music nor TIDAL discloses artist, song or album analytics to their paying customers.)

For several years now, people have been asking Spotify to deliver a chart that provides an up-to-the-minute ranking artists by their total monthly listeners, but to date, they have only fered Top 200 and Viral 50 charts, which users can filter by country and date.

That changes today.

Below you will find a list every hip-hop artist—as well as a number R&B artists whose sound and image are synonymous with hip-hop—that currently has over 1 million monthly listeners on Spotify, along with their top streamed song on the platform.

To make your browsing experience more friendly, we have separated artists into four tiers based on their total monthly listeners: "We Gonna Make It" (1 to 4.9M), "FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt" (5 to 9.9M), "Kinda Like a Big Deal" (10 to 19.9M) and, finally, "I Got The Keys" (20M+). 

While running through the list, it's important to keep four things in mind:

1. If your favorite artist doesn't appear, it's because they do not currently (as May 19, 2017) have over 1 million monthly listeners. Upset? Get to streaming.
2. Artists like Jay Z (7.9M), Beyoncé (17.1M) and Dr. Dre (6.2M) have not made their entire catalog available on Spotify because their stakes in competing streaming services. If they did, however, their monthly listener totals would be higher.
3. We're confident we found every single artist that meets our minimum criteria standard—at least 1 million monthly listeners—but there's a strong likelihood we did miss a few artists. We will update accordingly moving forward, we promise.
4. This is a fun exercise. Please keep this in mind as these numbers are constantly updating.

And here we go...

"I Got The Keys" (20M+)

38M        Drake (“One Dance” - 1.2B)
31M        Kendrick Lamar (“HUMBLE.” - 217M)
29M        Nicki Minaj (“Only” - 180M)
28M        The Weeknd (“Can’t Feel My Face” - 703M)
27M        Future (“Low Life” - 271M)
26M        Ty Dolla $ign (“Swalla” - 157M)
25M        Rihanna (“Work” - 674M)
24M        DJ Khaled (“For Free” - 118M)
20M        Kanye West (“FourFiveSeconds” - 380M)
20M        G-Eazy (“Me, Myself & I” - 600M)

"Kinda Like a Big Deal" (10 to 19.9M)

19M        Pitbull (“Timber” - 430M)
17M        Beyonce (“Halo” - 280M)
17M        Eminem (“Lose Yourself” - 351M)
17M        Wiz Khalifa (“See You Again” - 648M)
15M        Lil Wayne (“A Milli” - 105M)
15M        Big Sean (“Bounce Back” - 210M)
15M        Kehlani (“Gangsta” - 82M)
14M        Chris Brown ("Five More Hours" - 326M)
14M        Migos (“Bad and Boujee” - 280M)
13.9M      Post Malone (“White Iverson” - 276M)
13.8M      French Montana (“No Shopping” - 63M)
13.3M      Lil Uzi Vert (“XO Tour Llif3” - 106M)
13.1M      Khalid (“Location” - 154M)
13.0M      KYLE (“iSpy” - 223M)
12.4M      Travis Scott (“Antidote” - 193M)
12.3M      Rae Sremmurd (“Black Beatles” - 383M)
11.7M      Logic (“1-800-273-8255” - 29M)
10.9M      Machine Gun Kelly (“Bad Things” - 247M)
10.5M      J. Cole (“No Role Modelz” - 307M)
10.4M      Gucci Mane (“Both” - 59M)
10.1M      Young Thug (“pick up the phone” - 154M)
10.0M      Kodak Black (“Tunnel Vision” - 109M)
10.0M      Desiigner (“Panda” - 590M)

"FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt" (5 to 9.9M)

9.8M        2 Chainz (“Watch Out” - 75M)
9.1M        D.R.A.M. (“Broccoli” - 343M)
9.1M        Wale (“My PYT” - 57M)
8.7M        Snoop Dogg (“Young, Wild & Free” - 298M)
8.7M        Childish Gambino (“Redbone” - 125M)
8.7M        Chance The Rapper (“No Problem” - 172M)
8.5M        Jeremih (“Don’t Tell ‘Em” - 191M)
8.5M        Ne-Yo ("Time Our Lives" - 376M)
8.3M        PARTYNEXTDOOR (“Run Up” - 169M)
8.0M        Notorious B.I.G (“Hypnotize” - 130M)
8.0M        Frank Ocean (“Thinkin Bout You” - 192M)
7.9M        Jay Z (“Niggas in Paris” - 351M)
7.8M        50 Cent (“In Da Club” - 169M)
7.7M        Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (“Thrift Shop” - 358M)
7.5M        Tyga (“Ayo” - 243M)
7.5M        Fetty Wap (“Trap Queen” - 522M)
7.1M        ASAP Rocky (“Fucking Problems” - 244M)
7.1M        Mike WiLL Made-It (“23” - 99M)
7.0M        Outkast (“Hey Ya!” - 214M)
7.0M        Trey Songz ("Slow Motion" - 162M)
6.9M        Bryson Tiller (“Don’t” - 279M)
6.9M        Kid Ink (“Promise” - 103M)
6.8M        Rick Ross (“Purple Lamborghini” - 116M)
6.7M        A Boogie Wit da Hoodie (“My Shit” - 57M)
6.3M        Kid Cudi (“Pursuit Happiness” - 157M)
6.2M        B.o.B (“Airplanes” - 122M)
6.2M        Russ (“What They Want” - 97M)
6.2M        Dr. Dre (“The Next Episode” - 185M)
6.2M        Meek Mill (“All Eyes on You” - 156M)
6.0M        Lil Yachty (“One Night” - 99M)
5.9M        T.I. (“Whatever You Like” - 92M)
5.8M        2Pac (“Ambitionz Az A Ridah” - 83M)
5.8M        Sage The Gemini ("Now and Later" - 155M)
5.7M        Yo Gotti (“Down in the DM” - 100M)
5.7M        ScHoolboy Q (“Man the Year” - 115M)
5.6M        YG (“My N*gga” - 122M) “FDT” doesn’t show up in Popular]
5.6M        Joey Badass (“Devastated” - 75M)
5.5M        21 Savage (“X” - 162M)
5.5M        Mac Miller (“Donald Trump” - 114M)
5.5M        XXXTentacion (“Look At Me!” - 63M)
5.4M        NAV (“Some Way” - 30M)
5.2M        Fat Joe ("All The Way Up" - 105M)
5.1M        Metro Boomin (“X” - 162M)
5.0M        The Game (“100” - 66M)
5.0M        A$AP Ferg (“Work (Remix)” - 99M)
5.0M        Tinie Tempah (“Girls Like” - 168M)

"We Gonna Make It" (1 to 4.9M)

4.8M        Tory Lanez (“LUV” - 159M)
4.8M        Kevin Gates (“2 Phones” - 154M)
4.7M        Busta Rhymes (“Don’t Cha” - 73M)
4.7M        Aminé (“Caroline” - 217M)
4.6M        Lil Jon (“Turn Down For What” - 256M)
4.6M        Madeintyo (“Uber Everywhere” - 109M)
4.6M        T-Pain (“Buy U A Drank” - 74M)
4.2M        DMX (“X Gon Give It To You” - 124M)
4.2M        Lupe Fiasco (“The Show Goes On” - 65M)
4.1M        6LACK (“PRBLMS” - 47M)
4.1M        Stormzy ("Shut Up" - 52M)
4.1M        Juicy J (“Bandz a Make Her Dance” - 55M)
4.1M        Ludacris (“My Chick Bad” - 31M)
4.1M        Playboi Carti (“wokeuplikethis” - 15M)
4.1M        Miguel (“Adorn” - 99M)
4.1M        DJ Mustard ("In My Room" - 110M)
4.0M        Pusha T (“Trouble on My Mind” - 31M)
4.0M        PnB Rock (“Selfish” - 66M)
3.8M        Ayo & Teo ("Rolex" - 62M)
3.8M        Omarion ("Post To Be" - 182M)
3.7M        Rob $tone ("Chill Bill" - 194M)
3.7M        Waka Flocka Flame (“No Hands” - 98M)
3.5M        Roy Woods (“Drama” - 62M)
3.5M        Remy Ma ("All The Way Up" - 105M)
3.4M        will.i.am (“Scream & Shout” - 198M)
3.4M        Diddy (“Ill Be Missing You - 3.4M)
3.4M        Rich Homie Quan (“Flex (Ooh, Ooh, Ooh)” - 161M)
3.3M        Missy Elliott (“Get Your Freak On” - 53M)
3.2M        Tee Grizzley ("First Day Out" - 31M)
3.1M        YFN Lucci (“Key to the Streets” - 36M)
3.1M        ASAP Mob (“Yamborgini High” - 33M)
3.0M        Nas (“If I Ruled The World” - 47M)
3.0M        Ice Cube (“It Was a Good Day” - 90M)
3.0M        O.T. Genasis (“Cut It” - 107M)
3.0M        SZA (“Childs Play” - 28M)
2.9M        Soulja Boy (“Crank That” - 74M)
2.9M        Young Money (“Trophies” - 88M)
2.7M        Jidenna (“Classic Man” - 109M)
2.7M        Jeezy (“Put On” - 54M)
2.7M        N.W.A (“Straight Outta Compton” - 79M)
2.7M        August Alsina ("I Luve This Shit" - 48M)
2.6M        GoldLink (“Crew” - 14M)
2.6M        Jhené Aiko (“The Worst” - 67M)
2.5M        Young M.A ("OOOUUU" - 112M)
2.4M        Ja Rule (“Always on Time” - 42M)
2.4M        Lil Dicky (“Save Dat Money” - 94M)
2.4M        Fabolous (“Into You” - 22M)
2.4M        Young Dolph (“Play Wit Yo Bitch” - 4M)
2.4M        ILoveMakonnen (“Tuesday” - 116M)
2.3M        Big Boi (“Shutterbugg” - 10M)
2.2M        Chief Keef (“Love Sosa” - 51M)
2.1M        Ugly God ("Water" - 54M)
2.1M        Fort Minor (“Remember The Name” - 146M)
2.1M        A Tribe Called Quest (“Can I Kick It?” - 44M)
2.1M        Ying Yang Twins (“Get Low” - 85M)
2.1M        K Camp (“Comfortable” - 55M)
2.0M        DJ Drama (“Wishing” - 44M)
2.0M        Tech N9ne (“Hood Go Crazy” - 33M)
2.0M        Wu-Tang Clan (“C.R.E.A.M.” - 52M)
2.0M        Nebu Kiniza ("Gassed Up" - 53M)
1.9M        Lil' Kim (“Lady Marmalade” - 58M)
1.9M        Vic Mensa (“U Mad” - 33M)
1.8M        Anderson .Paak (“Am I Wrong” - 19M)
1.8M        Lloyd Banks (“You Don’t Know” - 46M)
1.8M        Tyler, The Creator (“Yonkers” - 54M)
1.8M        Dae Dae ("What U Mean" 36M)
1.7M        E-40 (“Choices (Yup)” - 31M)
1.7M        Warren G (“Regulate” - 84M)
1.7M        Denzel Curry (“Ultimate” - 62M)
1.7M        Lloyd ("You" - 23M)
1.6M        The Roots ("The Seed 2.0" - 39M) 
1.6M        Bobby Shmurda (“Hot N*gga” - 134M)
1.6M        Eve (“Let Me Blow Ya Mind” - 59M)
1.6M        Yelawolf (“Till Its Gone” - 54M)
1.6M        Vince Staples (“Norf Norf” - 30M)
1.6M        Action Bronson ("Baby Blue" - 48M)
1.5M        Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony (“Tha Crossroads” - 31M)
1.5M        Mobb Deep (“Shock Ones Pt. II” - 47M)
1.5M        Eazy-E (“Real Muthaphuckin G’s - 22M)
1.5M        Hoodie Allen (“No Interruption” - 52M)
1.5M        Common (“Glory” - 26M)
1.5M        Lil Durk (“Like Me” - 25M)
1.5M        Isaiah Rashad (“Free Lunch” - 12M)
1.5M        Skizzy Mars - ("Do You There" - 15M)
1.5M        dvsn (“Hallucinations” - 26M)
1.5M        BJ The Chicago Kid (“Turnin’ Me Up” - 17M)
1.5M        NF ("Grindin" - 19M)
1.4M        Skepta ("Shutdown" - 35M)
1.4M        Twista (“Slow Jamz” - 20M)
1.4M        Bankroll Fresh (“Walked In” - 46M)
1.4M        Ab-Soul (“Illuminate” - 13M)
1.4M        DeJ Loaf (“Back Up” - 77M)
1.4M        Eric Bellinger ("Valet" - 59M)
1.3M        Mike Stud ("These Days" - 24M)
1.3M        D12 (“My Band” - 27M)
1.3M        Rich Gang (“Lifestyle” - 93M)
1.3M        Method Man (“Da Rockwilder” - 26M)
1.3M        Cam’ron (“Hey Ma” - 33M)
1.3M        Ace Hood (“Bugatti” - 56M)
1.3M        Majid Jordan (“My Love” - 22M)
1.2M        Rich Chigga ("Dat $tick" - 26M)
1.2M        LL Cool J (“Doin It” - 21M)
1.2M        Run The Jewels (“Close Your Eyes (And Count to Fuck)” - 20M)
1.2M        Mos Def (“Ms. Fat Booty” - 35M)
1.2M        Syd (“YOU’RE THE ONE” - 9M)
1.2M        Ray J ("Sexy Can I" - 28M)
1.1M        Three 6 Mafia (“Stay Fly” - 17M)
1.1M        Bow Wow (“Shortie Like Mine” - 15M)
1.1M        Chingy (“Right Thurr” - 25M)
1.1M        Hopsin (“Ill Mind Hopsin 5” - 30M)
1.1M        Earl Sweatshirt (“Chum” - 27M)
1.1M        Lil Pump ("Flex Like Ouu" - 5M)
1.1M        Lecrae ("All I Need Is You" - 15M)
1.0M        Andy Mineo ("You Can't Stop Me" - 25M)
1.0M        Q-Tip (“A Little Party Never Killed Nobody” - 101M)
1.0M        Smino (“blkswn” - 2M)
1.0M        Freddie Gibbs (“Crushed Glass” - 810K)
1.0M        Dave East (“Wrote My Way Out” - 5.4M)
1.0M        Bad Meets Evil (“Lighters” - 57M)
1.0M        Danny Brown (“Grown Up” - 24M)
1.0M        Mick Jenkins (“Jazz” - 15M)
1.0M        Juvenile (“Back That Azz Up” - 22M)
1.0M        Plies (“Ran Off On The Plug Twice” - 21M)

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It Is Not Okay to Listen to Accused Serial Rapist R. Kelly

June 14, 2008, Robert Kelly shudders a sigh relief and walks out a Cook County courthouse a free man, cleared multiple child pornography charges in a trial that lasted six years. Look at him, armored in an expensive suit carefully chosen for the way its deep blue threads convey a calm and assertive innocence, look at him waving to supporters, one whom tells a reporter, "I just wish they leave the Kells alone." His face is the face a man who had his invincibility challenged and then reaffirmed, a man who would emerge from his trial by fire not only unscathed but strengthened. 

Now stop looking at Robert Kelly because Robert Kelly is a rich and powerful man and rich and powerful men can command our attention any time they choose. Instead, let your mind's eye wander over that linoleum drenched courthouse and into the city Chicago, into the home the girl who was on the tape that brought Robert Kelly to trial, the girl who at 14-years-old was raped and then had the videotape her rape played and replayed and analyzed and dissected, brutal frame by brutal frame, for a jury disbelieving strangers. Don't look away because she is not a rich and powerful man, and those who are not rich and powerful men rarely receive our attention. If only for a moment, give her your attention. 

It's been some thirteen years now since R. Kelly was first charged with child pornography possession, and since his acquittal we've settled into a drudgingly predictable pattern in which every few years the spotlight fades and then brightens again on the "stomach-churning" sexual assault allegations R. Kelly has faced, after which we see a wave intellectualized articles about separating great art from the sometimes terrible people who make great art, after which absolutely nothing happens, largely because the media's insistence on reframing R. Kelly's alleged systematic, repeated rape children as a question about art. 

"Is It Okay to Listen to R. Kelly?" asked Vulture in a recent article, making sure to credit him as a "musical genius" first and foremost before writing that he's been accused "awful things." And when we do that, when we insist on including R. Kelly's genius and music into our thinking about the things R. Kelly has been accused , it gives us a welcome escape hatch, it allows our attention to shift away from the path human devastation R. Kelly has left in his wake, away from the very real damage done to very real human beings, and into the land ideas and intellectual debate and cultural analysis, a land where it's far easier to continue to support R. Kelly because is it okay to listen to R. Kelly? If it's even a question it must be.

Ignorance is an excuse, although the weakest one, and one I know well. For years I gleefully bought and memorized R. Kelly albums, turned up the "Ignition (Remix)" when it came on the radio, wrote multiple articles about "Trapped in the Closet" alone. I knew Kelly had been charged with a sex crime, but in my mind, that trial had largely been reduced to a Chappelle Show skit, a reduction which conveniently allowed me to freely laugh at "Sex Kitchen." I'm now ashamed to admit that it never once crossed my mind that there was a child, an actual child with a name and a family and a favorite TV show, at the center those charges. And then, about two years ago, I actually took the time to read the "stomach-churning" sexual assault allegations against Kelly and suddenly I saw the very real children involved and I saw their parents putting on a brave face for their children but crying behind closed doors and I saw Kelly, unrepentant and untouched, and I was nauseated. So since that day I haven't listened to a single R. Kelly song or watched a single R. Kelly video or written a single word about R. Kelly, until now, because knowing what I now knew, how could it possibly be okay to listen to R. Kelly?

The litany allegations against Kelly, a litany that extends far beyond his one well-publicized trial, aren't classified, aren't hidden, many them are matters public record and easily accessed by anyone willing to look for them. So I have looked for them, because the stories young black women rarely demand our attention, particularly when placed against the stories rich and powerful men. Here are those stories...      

--------------

  • Kelly met Aaliyah when she was 12-years-old and then married her when she was 15, he was 28 at the time. He falsified marriage documents stating that she was 18, the marriage was later annulled and Aaliyah signed an NDA nondisclosure agreement] preventing her from speaking about Kelly and their relationship. Barry Hankerson, Aaliyah's uncle and Kelly's then manager, writes a letter to Kelly's attorney in an attempt to get Kelly psychiatric help for his "compulsion to pursue underage girls." 
It Is Not Okay to Listen to Accused Serial Rapist R. Kelly
  • Tiffany Hawkins sues Kelly, alleging that beginning when she was 15-years-old he repeatedly had group sex with her and other underage girls.
  • Patrice Jones sues Kelly, alleging that beginning when she was 16-years-old Kelly had sex with her repeatedly, impregnated her at 17 and then forced her to have an abortion. According to Jones' lawyer, "That abortion haunts her to this day. She’s under psychological care now. It’s changed her life.” 
  • Tracy Sampson sues Kelly, alleging that Kelly began having sex with her when she was a 17-year-old intern at Epic Records and that Kelly impregnated her. 
  • Chicago prosecutors charge Kelly with 21 counts child pornography centered around a tape that purportedly shows Kelly having sex with, and urinating on, his goddaughter, who was 14-years-old at the time. According to Jim DeRogatis, the Chicago-Sun Times reporter who covered the trial and wrote several stories investigating Kelly's alleged abuses, "You watch the video for which he was indicted and there is the disembodied look the rape victim. He orders her to call him Daddy. He urinates in her mouth and instructs her at great length on how to position herself to receive his 'gift.' It's a rape that you're watching." Kelly is acquitted after his attorneys successfully argue that the tape could have been manipulated to make the man in it look like Kelly.
It Is Not Okay to Listen to Accused Serial Rapist R. Kelly
  • During the trial, Lisa Van Allen testifies that she began having sex with Kelly when she was 17-years-old and had participated in group sex along with the 14-year-old girl in the tape. In her testimony, Allen also says that she once broke down crying during a taped sexual encounter and Kelly became angry because the footage was now useless. “He couldn’t watch that, he couldn’t do anything with that,” she said.  
  • Kelly is arrested in Miami on 16 additional charges child pornography, authorities claim they found multiple photos nude, underage girls and photos Kelly "involved in sexual conduct with the female minor" while searching his residence. The charges are dismissed because the search warrant was deemed to be invalid.
  • An unnamed young woman alleges in a more than one-hundred page lawsuit that when she was 14-years-old Kelly discovered her at a Chicago school, Kenwood Academy, and began to have sex with her along with other underage girls he recruited from the school, giving them sneakers and other gifts. She says she's "scarred" by the experience and later attempts to kill herself by slitting her wrists.
  • In 2004 another sex tape leaks and the woman in that tape, Deleon Richards, says that she began having sex with Kelly a decade earlier when she was a teenager.
  • According to DeRogatis, there have been "Dozens girls - not one, not two, dozens - with harrowing lawsuits," all which have been settled by Kelly. DeRogatis also recounts that he also routinely fields calls from other women who say they can't sleep because they're haunted by Kelly's sexual abuse them as a teenager. It's important to note that all the examples above, dozens examples, only include women who went as far as filing lawsuits against Kelly. There are also reportedly several other examples in which Kelly settled with women before a lawsuit was filed, and droves other women allegedly abused by Kelly who never pursued any action against him. For example, a woman told the Chicago Sun-Times that Kelly began having sex with her when she was 17 after they met at a video shoot, another said she was involved in group sex along Hawkins, another said she was one the other girls from Kenwood Academy whom Kelly routinely had sex with, and Chicago area police twice investigated Kelly for completely separate incidents than the incident he was eventually charged for, but dropped those charges when the women declined to press charges. 
  • Kelly's longtime publicist, Regina Daniels, abruptly quit saying that Kelly has "crossed a line" by having sex with their then college-age daughter, who Kelly had known since she was seven.  
  • Kelly’s brother, Carey Kelly, alleges that Kelly attempted to get him to say he was the one in the sex tape, which he refused to do. He also alleges that he was routinely asked to find girls who "looked underage" at Kelly's shows and get their phone numbers.  
  • Demetrius Smith, Kelly’s longtime friend and personal assistant, publishes a memoir, The Man Behind the Man, in which he writes that: “Underage girls had proven to be Kelly’s] weakness. He was obsessed. Sickly addicted."

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When we read about R. Kelly's career and the allegations surrounding him we ten see words like "complicated" thrown around, except there's nothing complicated about our relationship to R. Kelly's continuing career at all. It's exceedingly straightforward, at least once you've seen the full scope and horrific weight the sum allegations brought against him. You can choose to believe that those dozens women, Tiffany Hawkins and Patrice Jones and Tracy Sampson and Lisa Van Allen and Deleon Richards and the girl who slit her wrists in a failed attempt to kill herself and all the broken, anonymous women who never sued and have called Jim DeRogatis simply because they need someone who will believe them, are all liars, all them, in which case you can listen to Kelly's music without burden. Or you have to believe that R. Kelly is a serial rapist who routinely preys on children. It really is that uncomplicated, there is no gray area, no middle ground, no haze. And if you believe that R. Kelly has done nauseatingly terrible things to children and you still choose to buy his albums and attend his concerts and listen to his music, then you're choosing to support a serial rapist. It's exceedingly straightforward. 

The complication comes not with R. Kelly himself but with our own lives. None us have any actual relationship with Robert Sylvester Kelly, and so it would be strikingly easy to cut him from our lives, except through his music he's permanently embedded into our most valued possession, our memories. We hear "I Believe I Can Fly" and think about Space Jam and remember our childhoods, we hear "I'm A Flirt" and remember how impossibly good our freshmen year crush looked that night at that house party, we hear "Happy People" and remember dancing with our aunt at our cousin's wedding and what his music means to us because it was playing while we were with the people who mean something to us and in the places that mean something to us. I remember driving down Harvard Ave. one November night, parking and then literally running into my friend's apartment to tell her about this incredibly strange and amazing....song?...they'd just played on the radio, "Trapped in the Closet." Of all the thousands hours my life I've forgotten, I still remember that hour. Our memories are sacred spaces, and so, course, we fight to protect them, wrap them in layer after layer denial and intentional ignorance if necessary to keep them pure and untarnished by the ten crushing truths we learn later. 

And so we tell ourselves that R. Kelly has never been convicted in court as if we truly believe that the justice system is a perfect reflection actual guilt and innocence. And so with each allegation, we concoct an explanation, most likely one provided by Kelly for us until the sheer volume allegations and explanations defy any logic. And so we tell ourselves that R. Kelly is a genius, detour into intellectual debates about the lines between the art and an artist's personal life as if any amount genius can be equivalent to the pain a raped child. As if you would ever look one those abused women in the eyes, women who could be your daughter or sister or mother or friend, and say, "But he makes great music." We all perform these mental contortions to avoid confronting hard truths so we can continue to live our lives in comfort, especially out fear being guilty by association, myself included in more ways than I can count, but here, in this specific case, with all these dozens  women who have said Kelly abused them, it really shouldn't be that difficult to place their pain in front our own entertainment. 

Shattering the sanctity our musical memories, our heroes, is a painful, difficult business, but I've found one force stronger than even our resistance to change - compassion. It's easy to ignore the allegations against Kelly when they're presented as ideas, a thing to be debated and thought about and questioned, it's nearly impossible to ignore them when you see those women as real, actual humans. As I write this my two daughters are sleeping and it's not hard to imagine them in the place Tiffany Hawkins and Patrice Jones, those fears come quick and devastatingly sharp to parents. I imagine them telling me they were raped, I imagine finding them with their wrists slit. I imagine them telling me who raped them, and then I imagine that man walking free out a courtroom, shuddering a sigh relief armored in an expensive suit carefully chosen for the way its deep blue threads convey a calm and assertive innocence. I imagine that man going on to gather fame and adoration and money and it's not hard to imagine because I know it's some father's reality and now I'm on the verge tears and deciding that I'll sleep in my daughter's room tonight so I can know she's protected and safe. 

If I could make you see their face when you look at Kelly, if I could make you hear their voice instead Kelly's when you listen to his music, I would, because they're all I see and hear now, and if their names are one day more well known than his, then there might be something like justice.

It is not okay to listen to R. Kelly.

Like this article? DJBooth is committed to quality music journalism, never clickbait. You can join us by downloading our app or following us on Facebook or Twitter.

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There's a new MacBook Touch Bar app for Ableton Live users

MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar app has a new addition set to expand producers’ use pATCHES, a third party site that provides users with free sample packs, recording advice, Live-centric production tips, and more. Their latest fering is a free preset that gives users access to a variety shortcuts on the Touch Bar, including a save button for new track versions, a shortcut for adding new audio, MIDI and return tracks, mute track buttons, time controls, and a hide the browser button.

pATCHES’ development for the Touch Bar is a first for Ableton Live. “Ableton Live has not yet received any ficial support for the Touch Bar, so we at pATCHES put together this collection icons, shortcuts, and macros to take advantage the adaptable portion your keyboard,” pATCHES notes in a statement on its new app.

Those seeking to install the Touch Bar addition will need pATCHES’ preset and the . The preset is free, but BetterTouchTool will require users to dig into their wallets after its initial 45-day free trial. The license inevitably required for BetterTouchTool costs $8.99 after the free trial.

H/T: 

There's a new MacBook Touch Bar app for Ableton Live users[hupso]
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PARTYNEXTDOOR – Damage | Hip Hop Songs

More from PARTYNEXTDOOR

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PARTYNEXTDOOR – Better Man ft. Rick Ross | Hip Hop Songs

More from PARTYNEXTDOOR

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EXCLUSIVE: Keyshia Ka’oir Talks Relationship Goals with Gucci Mane, BET Special

On Thursday evening (September 28), Keyshia Ka’oir hosted a celebration at Atlanta’s Terminus 330, nearly three weeks before she and Gucci Mane get married live on BET. The special, titled The Mane Event, will air on October 17 ahead a 10-episode series featuring the couple in their everyday life.

It’s safe to say we’ve finally grown accustomed to the new Gucci.

The venue was elegant, decorated as if it were anyone’s moneyed bridal shower. Cream and white floral arrangements dotted the tables. Drinks and small bites were served and people seemed to settle in to the idea Gucci and Keyshia on BET weekly, over Thai Beef and Brisket and Brie sliders. It’s not a hard sell actually, the two have been inseparable since Guwop’s release in May 2016. In fact, Ka’oir had to leave her own party two hours early Thursday night (“I have a plane to catch. My man has a show in Denver.”).

They take pictures for social media beaming in matching colors, on bicycles and in their living room, prompting fans the couple to tag ‘#RelationshipGoals’ with each repost. “I feel like people can kind relate to our relationship, he’s been to prison so many times and for me to be with him while he was going through the toughest part his life, being that he is a celebrity, people can relate to that,” Ka’oir told Hip-Hop Wired. “Like, ‘Damn, she stuck around…’ They got men who are locked up so it’s kinda like, they have similar stories.”

The rapper has transcended beyond the hood stories Atlanta’s eastside; narratives longstanding intimidation and outright violence on the streets Decatur, simply sound like intricately woven tall tales after the year-and-a-half Gucci’s had.

Gone are the days reckless abandon, the East Atlanta Santa is svelte, happy and getting married on television. And a lot people credit the woman by his side, Keyshia Kaoir.

“I mean, he’s a man so I couldn’t change him,” she says. “He had to want to change but I did keep him positive. I did keep him going. I did let him know that I love him and I’m here waiting for you so you have something to look forward to everyday.”

See more photos Ka’oir, that rock and festivities below and on the following pages.

EXCLUSIVE: Keyshia Ka’oir Talks Relationship Goals with Gucci Mane, BET Special

EXCLUSIVE: Keyshia Ka’oir Talks Relationship Goals with Gucci Mane, BET Special

Photos: Prince Williams/ATLPics.net

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PARTYNEXTDOOR Teases New Music With Single Art For "Bad Intentions"

PARTYNEXTDOOR (PND) apparently has something up his sleeve. Early Saturday morning (September 23), the Canadian singer-songwriter took to social media to share the first seven new single covers. He will continue teasing single art every day for the next seven days.

“DAY ONE 1.) Bad Intentions,” PND wrote on Twitter.

Back in July, the OVO Sound affiliate tweeted he had music coming with Kanye West, T-Pain and Ne-Yo, but nothing materialized. It’s unclear if any those collaborations will surface anytime soon.

Throughout his career, PND has worked with a laundry list top tier artists, including fellow Canadian Drake, Wiz Khalifa, Rihanna and DJ Khaled.

PND’s last project was the Colours 2 EP, which he released in June. His new solo album, Club Atlantis, is expected to arrive sometime this year.

Check out his tweet above.

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JAY-Z Optimistic About America’s Future Despite Donald Trump Being “A Joke”

London, England – JAY-Z has remained fairly tight-lipped regarding the current political landscape the United States and the polarizing presidency Donald Trump. Jigga even declined to answer questions about POTUS during this year’s Sundance Film Festival in January.

However, during a recent interview with BBC Radio 1’s Clara Amfo while in the U.K., JAY-Z broke his silence. The acclaimed rapper was asked to comment on the current state America in 2017, and admits that, despite all the issues going on, he remains optimistic for the future.

“I believe that everything that happens in life is for your greatest good, and I don’t think that this is happening if we weren’t prepared to handle it,” he said. “I’m just looking forward to what’s next after that, because usually when things are darkest, then light is on its way. I’m not fearful.”

Despite not mentioning Donald Trump by name, JAY-Z did fer a few comments that were, make no mistake about it, aimed at the president.

“I believe that we are resilient, especially us as black people and especially the culture. We’ve been through so much more than this guy,” Jigga says. “This guy, I’m looking at him like, man, this is a joke, with all — I can’t even say with all due respect — with all disrespect. I just think he’s not a very sophisticated man, especially when it comes to the idea until everyone is free, no one is free. Period. That’s just a fact. We are all linked some kind way. So if you oppress a certain people, everyone is in danger, karmically and in real life. If I’m being oppressed and you have this big, nice mansion, I’m coming inside there. That’s gonna happen, that’s just how life is. So just on a practical level, that just makes sense. On a spiritual and karmic level, if we’re all children God, then we’re all brothers and sisters, and at some point, if you’re doing that to your brother, then that can’t last.”

Later in the interview, JAY-Z spoke more broadly about the world politics. He fered his dismay at the way in which certain politicians refuse to cross party lines on issues that concern real people, particularly the topic prison reform, something about which he feels strongly. In an article he penned for TIME in June, JAY-Z spoke about the need to take on “the exploitative bail industry.”

“I don’t ever think I was politically astute, ever. I just care about people. I think politics is a divisive thing. I guess it’s in place so people can have checks and balances. You have one side versus another side. But what it does typically is it doesn’t work the way it was designed to work. It was designed to work so you could have one side Democrats to check Republicans. But it don’t really work that, because what happens is people vote along their party lines and they start talking to each other like, ‘I’m not going to cross the aisle,’ even though there’s people attached to these laws. I think they’ve forgotten that piece, that these things are going to affect real-life people. When you put in prison reform, people are going to jail. Families are being broke up and fathers are away from their children and the family structure is broken, so that kid grows up and that kid gets into trouble and he goes to jail and the cycle is vicious. I think we’ve forgotten that, as a government, that there are real people attached to these laws that you don’t want to vote on because you’re not a Democrat and you don’t want to go against your party.”

In addition to his interview, JAY-Z also performed two songs for Radio 1’s Live Lounge segment. The first, “Family Feud,” is from his recently released 4:44 album. Jigga reveals that, despite only recording the song two days before the album was scheduled to come out, he’s proud it because  what it represents, not only in terms his immediate family but also for the culture Hip Hop.

“I’m proud this song because it happens on so many levels that it also speaks to the culture,” he said. “Like us, working together and how we, when we’re working together, we’re more powerful. We have this thing in Hip Hop where it’s the older generation against the younger guys and it’s like, ‘Come on, man.’ That’s so divisive. We’re not gonna have power that way.’”

The second song JAY-Z performed was “Numb/Encore,” from his 2004 collaborative EP with Linkin Park. The touching performance was in honor  Chester Bennington, who died by suicide in July.

“That felt really special to me. That’s the first time I’ve performed that song after Chester passed away, which was super tragic. I really think that hopefully his death serves as a wake-up call. Mental health is a real thing. You never know what people are going through and you think because they’re performers and he’s sold fourteen thousand million records – that doesn’t equate to happiness. Money or fame, that doesn’t mean anything if you’re not happy inside. And a lot people don’t deal with what’s happening to us. You just keep going. Especially for a performer like that. You just start numbing yourself. You become numb. He’s singing it. He’s telling you you become numb. You just got and get bigger audiences and you move further away from yourself. It’s tragic. I knew him well. He was a really nice person. He had like five kids. Hopefully his death wakes people up and a lot people start taking care themselves.”

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