Lady Gaga apologizes for R. Kelly collaboration
Singer to pull track Do What U Want (With My Body) from iTunes, streaming services
Lady Gaga is sorry for her 2013 duet with R. Kelly in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against the singer, and she intends to remove the song from streaming services.
"What I am hearing about the allegations against R. Kelly is absolutely horrifying and indefensible," she said.
Posting on social media on Wednesday, Gaga wrote that she had collaborated with Kelly on Do What U Want (With My Body) during a "dark time" in her life as a victim of sexual assault. She said she should have sought therapy or other help instead.
"I think it's clear how explicitly twisted my thinking was at the time. If I could go back and have a talk with my younger self I'd tell her to go through the therapy I have since then so that I could understand the confused post-traumatic state that I was in," she wrote.
I stand by anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual assault: <a href="https://t.co/67sz4WpV3i">pic.twitter.com/67sz4WpV3i</a>—@ladygaga
"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."
Lifetime's Surviving R. Kelly series, which aired this month, has brought renewed attention to the singer's history and allegations that he has sexually abused women and girls. Kelly has denied wrongdoing and, in 2008, was acquitted on child pornography charges.
Gaga's collaboration with Kelly had been intensely criticized when it was released, in part because of the allegations against him and because of the sexually charged performances they did on Saturday Night Live and the American Music Awards in 2013. Gaga wrote the track — which appeared on her studio album Artpop — with Kelly, regular collaborator Paul Blair and French DJ and producers Martin Bresso and William Grigahcine.
The song's official music video was directed by Terry Richardson, who also had been accused of sexual misconduct. The video was never officially released, but purportedly included controversial scenes including some depicting Kelly as a doctor leaning over a naked Gaga, the patient.
Richardson has denied allegations of misconduct and said any relationships he had with models were consensual.