After years of staying relatively quiet about the countless accusations of rape, assault, and abuse against him, R. Kelly is speaking out about being muted by Spotify.
“We are removing R. Kelly’s music from all Spotify owned and operated playlists and algorithmic recommendations such as Discover Weekly,” Spotify told Billboard in a statement.
“His music will still be available on the service, but Spotify will not actively promote it. We don’t censor content because of an artist’s or creator’s behavior, but we want our editorial decisions—what we choose to program—to reflect our values. When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful, it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator.”
It seems the bold move got the attention of R. Kelly and his team, prompting his manager issued a statement on the singer’s behalf.
“Spotify has the right to promote whatever music it chooses, and in this case its actions are without merit. It is acting based on false and unproven allegations. It is bowing to social-media fads and picking sides in a fame-seeking dispute over matters that have nothing to do with serving customers,” he said.
The music of a 20-year-old rapper, XXXTentacion, was also scrapped from Spotify as part of the policy, and his team issued a statement as well.He has been accused of several crimes and charged with multiple felonies for allegedly beating and strangling his girlfriend while she was pregnant in 2016. He is currently facing up to 30 years behind bars for False imprisonment and witness tampering.