Music legend Chaka Khan apologizes for throwing shade at Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige over ‘greatest singers’ list

The apology comes after Khan, a 10-time Grammy Award winner, kept it way too real as she addressed her feelings about coming in at No. 29 on Rolling Stone's list.

Loading the player...

Chaka Khan apologized for her brutally frank assessment of the vocal prowess of the female singers who ranked ahead of her on Rolling Stone’s “200 Greatest Singers of All Time” list.

The “Ain’t Nobody” singer shared on Instagram on Sunday that she didn’t intend to hurt or upset anyone when she shared her opinions of other vocalists — a list that included Mariah Carey, Beyoncé and Mary J. Blige — while on the podcast “The Originals” on March 1, according to People.

Khan said she “took the bait” rather than challenging the need to rank the greatest singers of all time, claiming Andrew Goldman, who hosts the Los Angeles Magazine podcast, pitted her against her fellow performers.

Chaka Khan poses for a picture last October at the 2022 Angel Ball at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. Khan apologized Sunday for comments she made about her fellow vocalists when she learned they ranked ahead of her on a greatest-singers list. (Photo: Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

“As artists, we are unfairly put into ‘boxes,’ ‘categories’ or on ‘lists,” Khan posted, according to People. “Being an artist or musician is not a competition. It’s a gift, for which I am truly grateful.”

“It was not my intention to cause pain or upset anyone,” she continued. “To anyone that felt this way, I sincerely apologize.”

Her apology comes after Khan, a 10-time Grammy Award winner, declined to restrain herself as she addressed her feelings about coming in at No. 29 on Rolling Stone’s list. She was especially stunned to learn she trailed Blige and Carey.

People previously reported that when Goldman congratulated Khan on being included, she responded: “This don’t mean a great deal to me. These people don’t quantify or validate me in any way.”

Khan inquired as to who all made the list, something with which she was unfamiliar. She reportedly replied, “As she f—-ing should,” when Goldman informed her late icon Aretha Franklin earned the top spot.

Khan retorted, “That must be payola or some s— like that,” when told of Carey’s placement of number five on the list.

She initially responded, “No comment,” when Goldman mentioned Beyoncé‘s spot at No. 8, but then she offered more. “She’s a great singer,” Khan opined, People reported. She added that Beyoncé ‘has the opportunity to be a great singer.”

The realization that Blige — with whom Khan shares a close friendship — placed at No. 25, just a few sports ahead of her, likely triggered the soul legend’s most scathing response: “They are blind as a motherf—ing bat!”

“They need hearing aids. They have no eyes. They have no ears,” she said, adding that those who came up with the rankings “must be the children of Helen Keller!”

Khan affirmed that she and Blige remain tight after patching up their relationship in 2007 and recording the single “Disrespectful” together afterward.

“Thank you for all the love everyone has shown me, unconditionally,” she wrote on IG, noting that she’s begun a foundation she plans to announce.

Empowering all artists is crucial, she continued, “because we truly are the architects of change.”

TheGrio is FREE on your TV via Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku and Android TV. Also, please download theGrio mobile apps today!