My last post was a tip from my good friend George Smith. I recall early in our friendship, we had a good long argument over the objective artistic value of the work of Mr. Robert Kelly. You can most likely guess what side I was on. I argued that despite his apparent sleaziness and retardation were part and parcel with his proven craftsmanship and genius, and it was often impossible to tell the difference. Such an oblivious and tortured songwriting savant was obviously an heir to the sublime/icky legacy of Marvin Gaye. Smitty didn't agree about the complicated brilliance of R. Kelly's songbook. All we really agreed on is that he definitely did fuck that little girl and tape it. Anywwaaayyyy, I somewhat cryptically titled the last blog, but in fact it was a Kelly reference. I think this is a great example of Kelly's pop genius: a wonderfully sang and structured track that epitomizes his fluid mix of gospel uplift and new jack schmaltz. The really compelling questions are: is he singing this to an old lover or a dead homey? and how many times do you think he repeated the wierd but touching phrase "come on and braid my hair" in the studio?
Feature: Quick Takes (March 2017)
4 days ago