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Chance The Rapper Says Collaborating With R. Kelly Was A “Mistake”

His comments about the accusers were also briefly the center of online controversy.

Chance the Rapper has admitted that he regrets collaborating with R. Kelly on the song “Somewhere In Paradise.” In an interview with Cassius‘ Jamilah Lemieux that aired as part of the Lifetime special Surviving R. Kelly, Chance opened up about the song and also discussed his thoughts on Kelly’s accusations.

“Making a song with R. Kelly was a mistake,” Chance said.

Earlier in his career, Chance and Kelly seemed to have a friendly relationship. In addition to working together on “Somewhere In Paradise,” Chance appeared in the video for his song “Backyard Party,” and Chance even brought Kelly out to perform during his 2014 Lollapalooza set.

Chance came under fire after the interview was published because of comments about his reaction to the accusations initially, and how at the time he was more attune to the suffering of black men than black women, something that his perspective has since changed on. He told Lemiuex:

We’re programmed to really be hyper sensitive to black male oppression, it’s just prevalent in all media..But black women are [an] exponentially higher oppressed and violated group of people in comparison to the whole world. Maybe I didn’t care because I didn’t value the accusers' stories because they were black women, because usually niggas that get in trouble for shit like this on their magnitude of celebrity, it’s light-skinned women or white women, that’s when it’s a big story. I’ve never really seen any pictures of R. Kelly’s accusers…I can’t be right all the time, I made a mistake.

He went on to clarify that he’s glad the stories about Kelly have come to light and that he is rethinking his own role in relation to these kinds of issues.

“I’m happy that those women are getting voices now and that I can grow to understand better what my positioning should be or should have been when that opportunity came,” he said.

Chance posted an apology on Twitter, noting that initially some of his quotes were “taken out of context,” a statement echoed by Lemieux.

On “Somewhere,” Chance raps about his philanthropic activities in Chicago and jokingly mulls over a run for mayor—he’s been a vocal critic of the city’s outgoing mayor Rahm Emanuel. Chance says:

Chancelor the rapper, Chatham the hood
Santa to children, had to bag up the goods
They say I’m savin' my city, say I’m stayin' for good
They screamin', “Chano for mayor,” I’m thinkin' maybe I should

Later in the track, R. Kelly appears, singing the track’s second hook in a gospel style:

I believe, I believe, there’s somewhere out there for us all, there’s a paradise (there is a paradise)
I believe that if I die, I’ll see my homies somewhere in paradise
(I’ll see ‘em somewhere in paradise)

On his song “How Great” Chance notably used a choir that was exclusively black women, which he discussed in a Q&A on Twitter:


Genius broke down the controversial statements on R. Kelly’s “I Admit” in the video below.

Read the full lyrics to “Somewhere In Paradise” and the rest of Chance the Rapper’s discography

wohnwagen knaus azur | Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse2018117 min +101 | Law Of The Jungle Ep.343