Beyoncé's father reveals the extreme precautions he took with Destiny's Child girls around R Kelly
Following Lifetime's six-part docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly, many people have come forward with stories and allegations surrounding the Ignition musician. Artists such as John Legend, Lady Gaga, and Chance the Rapper have all spoken out against Kelly, and have apologised for previous collaborations they had with him.Now, another famous figure has made some statements on the matter.
Mathew Knowles, Beyonce's father, recently spoke to The Metro about how wary he was of his daughters when R Kelly was around.
Back when Destiny's Child were still together, Knowles managed the band. He recounted an incident in the late 1990s when his daughters, Beyonce and Solange, were given the opportunity to record with Kelly - but he turned it down.
"I was there, and my former wife Tina was there," he said. "The thing with R Kelly was, he liked to record late at night, around midnight. And what was different with his studio was that one room had a recording suite, and next door was a club, with 40 or 50 people dancing. "
He continued: "R Kelly was managed by Sony, by someone I won’t name, and at that time, they would almost force you to record with [their] artists. And R Kelly wasn’t cheap – it was $75,000, plus travel costs, so we’re talking $100,000 for a song.
"I personally rejected the song because I didn't think it was a good song. Not just because of [his] reputation – this was around 1998, we had just begun to hear some of those things."
When asked whether or not the rumours had influenced his decision not to let his daughters record with Kelly, Knowles responded: "certainly".
A source corroborated this, telling The Metro, "Record labels would ask R Kelly to write songs for emerging artists as a way to help them break into the industry and he made several requests for Destiny’s Child. Mathew and Tina rejected all of them because they didn’t want him anywhere near the band which is why they are one of the few acts to debut in the 90s without an R Kelly song in its official discography."
In light of this information, many are questioning why Kelly is only being officially investigated now, more than two decades after the initial rumours began circulating.
Indeed, many victims of sexual abuse at the hands of Kelly have spoken out in the past, but do not seem to have been taken seriously. Meanwhile, the musician is still profiting from performances and having his music streamed on platforms such as YouTube and Spotify.
At present, the I Believe I Can Fly artist is under investigation by a Georgia prosecutor, with TMZ reporting that some of the alleged victims from the documentary have been in touch with investigators.
Not much is known about the investigation, but lawyers representing one of the women featured in the series told CNN that the DA's office is asking for witnesses associated with some of the sexual misconduct allegations that arose in 2017.
R. Kelly has so far denied all accusations of sexual, mental, and physical abuse.