Michael Jackson & R Kelly: More than just music in common

Posted by Bel. The time is 3:31pm here in Wellington, NZ.

In a macabre twist, Michael Jackson's sudden death caused a huge spike in his popularity. He went from being regarded as a debt-ridden weirdo with another precarious comeback hanging in the balance, to immediately being revered for his days of glory and various previous successes - with other matters swept aside as we took time to remember why we loved his music.

And it seems the music will be an on-going legacy, with the announcement that R Kelly intends to finish the album he and Michael Jackson were working on in June of this year. There has been a lot of speculation about unfinished and unreleased Jackson recordings, but Kelly seems to think he has the seal of approval: "Michael liked the way I would try to sing the songs just like him".

These two might not be such the odd couple, they have a long history, with R Kelly writing "You Are Not Alone", MJ's smash hit of 1995. His first #1, in fact, since being accused of having sex with an underage boy.

In the archives of Russell Brown's Hard News blog, check out the post from 2005 related to the second highly publicised set of allegations against Michael Jackson: detailing the pornographic magazines, DVDs and books that were found in his bedroom at the time and the implications this has upon someone who so frequently played host to other people's children.

Being found 'not guilty' does not always mean a person is innocent, as this BBC article about R Kelly's aquittal on charges of child pornography elaborates. Time covers the last moments of the trial and the jury's deliberations, including interviews with those who say they are certain it is R Kelly in the recording.

The Chicago Sun-Times lists R Kelly's repugnant past, including when they were first supplied with the tape reportedly showing him filming himself having sex with a 14 year old. It also covers in chronological order the many other attempted law suits and out of court settlements from various other young women who had involvements with R Kelly, and also his falsified and thus swiftly annulled marriage to Aaliyah, who was at that time the 15 year old niece of his manager.

If you have the stomach for it, it's worth a read:
R. Kelly timeline: A chronology from birth to trial (Chicago Sun-Times).

Two superstars, with pop music talent that has helped to sell millions of records around the world. Horrifying that with such success, the personal cost has been inflicted on those who have the least ability to protect themselves.