The hits keep coming for Robert Sylvester Kelly, but not the kind he’s used to. Variety reports that his record label, Sony Music, has finally decided that optics matter and are moving to sever their working relationship with the (barely) sentient 200lb sack of excrement. They haven’t made an official announcement yet, but under the cover of night, RCA (a subsidiary of Sony) quietly removed his name from their roster of artists on their website.
According to Variety:
No external announcement of the move is planned in the immediate future, says a source, who added that the company took its time to wade through the issues “responsibly” and avoid legal ramifications.
Kelly’s back catalog will remain with RCA/Sony. Kelly’s last release with the label was a Christmas-themed album in 2016, although he has released several songs independently since that time, presumably with Sony’s consent, and Tweeted earlier this year that he has a new album on the way.
I guess it was getting too hot (and not so fresh) in the kitchen since the documentary Surviving R. Kelly aired earlier this month. Not that Sony in any way, shape, or form could dare claim they didn’t know there was a serious problem with Robert Sylvester’s personal life. The #muteRKelly movement has been petitioning Sony to drop his ass for years. But “an insider” claims they’ve been trying to extricate themselves from the millions of dollars they probably get off a Kidz Bop version of “Ignition” alone, well before protesters came for them with a crop duster.
In recent weeks a plane commissioned by the women’s organization UltraViolet and carrying a sign reading “RCA/Sony: Drop Sexual Predator R. Kelly” flew over Sony Music’s Los Angeles offices and a protest was staged outside of Sony’s New York headquarters. But an insider notes that efforts to extricate Sony from its contract with Kelly had been ongoing for several months before and “[the plane] had no influence.”
Variety notes that it’s tricky business for a label to take punitive action against an artist if they haven’t actually been convicted of a crime, as in Robert Sylvester’s case (which is a crime in and of itself). If he doesn’t wind up dead or in jail (fingers crossed), Robert Sylvester could sue for breach of contract. Thankfully, I think his broke ass has bigger things to worry about.