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Lady Gaga's Affront To R. Kelly's Victims

"Lady Gaga teamed up with R&B singer R. Kelly on her latest single, 'Do What U Want,' and it was a Chicago-based DJ and producer who played matchmaker," Luis Gomez reports for the Tribune.

"DJ White Shadow (real name: Paul Blair) said he put the two artists in touch on a whim while producing Gaga's upcoming album, Artpop. The synth-heavy 'Do What U Want' - which features Kelly singing 'You're the Marilyn, I'm the president' - was officially released Monday and can be heard in Best Buy's Beats Studio headphones commercial featuring the Washington Wizards' John Wall."

That's interesting, but it doesn't answer the blindingly obvious question staring us in the face. Not surprisingly, Jim DeRogatis takes it up.

"Stefani Germanotta is as well-known for championing female self-empowerment and an enlightened vision of sexuality (including gay rights) as she is for charting the cutting edge of modern dance-pop name under her better-known stage name, Lady Gaga," DeRogatis writes on his WBEZ Pop N Stuff blog.

"So how does she square those causes with 'Do What You Want,' her musically awkward collaboration with Chicago R&B star R. Kelly on her fourth album ARTPOP, due Nov. 8th?"

The amnesia of the music world, and the culture at-large, of R. Kelly's horrendous misdeeds is fairly astounding. True, he was acquitted of child pornography charges by a Cook County jury. Also true, though, is that the reporting of DeRogatis (and former Sun-Times colleague Abdon Pallasch), based partly on a slew of civil suits brought against Kelly, shows that the R&B superstar engaged in a pattern of harmful relationships with underage girls.

"Perhaps, despite all the time she spends in Chicago to be near her boyfriend Taylor Kinney while he's filming Chicago Fire, Gaga never has been exposed to WBEZ's extensive coverage of Kelly's troubling history," DeRogatis writes.

"Or maybe, like the promoters of this summer's Pitchfork Music Festival, she just doesn't care about the harm the R&B singer has done to so many of her beloved 'little monsters.'"

Indeed, Kelly is now simply the butt jokes everywhere that ignore the fact that he left real victims in his wake.

But if you're afraid you've lost your mojo and want to goose record sales, well, that's just business.

"Never reluctant to talk to the press, Gaga has yet to say how this pairing came about. But she hasn't been hesitant to play into the Kelly mindset: The cover art features her posterior clad only in the tiniest of (thoia?) thongs, while the tune's lyrics find her in an unusually submissive frame of mind: 'You can't have my heart and you won't use my mind but/Do what u want with my body, do what you want with my body ... Don't stop, let's party.'"

Really? Will the Muppets be there?

Entertainment Weekly says Gaga may regret her collaboration with Kelly because "the track doesn't quite come together."

Isn't there a better reason?


See also: Sasha Go Harder says she'd like to work with R. Kelly.

Shaking our heads.


Comments welcome.


1. From Joann Delgado:

I am saddened that I am not seeing more commentary like this on the song. Thank you for being thought-provoking. I made sure to share on FB. It was a well thought-out and intelligent piece.

2. UPDATE 11/20/13 from Steve Rhodes:

Lady Gaga appeared on Saturday Night Live with R. Kelly and ridiculously dry humped to guffaws everywhere.

Meanwhile, Rockie Fresh and Katie Got Bandz collaborated with Kelly on a remix of his "My Story," which includes the lyrics "And you know who you is girl - we been fuckin' since the 12th grade" and "They asked them in a interview, Why do he love these girls? They only thing he had to say was, Motherfuck the world!"


Posted on October 23, 2013

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