Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 24 August 2019

Celine Dion is the latest star to pull the plug on duet with R Kelly

The Canadian crooner is distancing herself from the disgraced rapper by removing their music video from YouTube

Celine Dion performs at the taping of 'Aretha! A Grammy Celebration For The Queen Of Soul' in Los Angeles on January 13, 2019. Reuters
Celine Dion performs at the taping of 'Aretha! A Grammy Celebration For The Queen Of Soul' in Los Angeles on January 13, 2019. Reuters

In the wake of Lady Gaga apologising for recording a song with R Kelly, another A-list artist has joined the ranks of those removing their collaborations with the rapper.

A video for I’m Your Angel, Celine Dion’s duet with the American R&B performer, has this week been removed from YouTube. The Canadian My Heart Will Go On singer is also reportedly in the process of having the track taken down from music streaming services, according to TMZ – although the single is currently still available on iTunes.

“The song is in the process of being pulled by Celine's team,” a source told the website.

Despite a history of assault allegations, R Kelly has continued to make music until 2018. AP
R. Kelly performs at the BET Awards in Los Angeles in 2013. AP

The move comes after the release of television documentary Surviving R Kelly, in which multiple women accused the 52-year-old rapper of sexual misconduct, including minors.

The Grammy-winning singer was tried and acquitted on child pornography charges in Chicago in 2008.

I’m Your Angel appeared on Dion’s 1998 holiday album, These are Special Times, and was written by Kelly. It topped the Billboard Hot 100 charts for six weeks, and was even nominated for a Grammy Award for best pop collaboration.

'I stand behind these women 1,000 per cent'

Dion has yet to respond to requests for comment by multiple outlets. The news comes several days after Lady Gaga spoke out about her collaboration with Kelly, Do What I Want (With my Body), promising to remove all traces of it from streaming services.

“I stand behind these women 1,000 per cent, believe them, know they are suffering and in pain, and feel strongly that their voices should be heard and taken seriously,” the singer said in a statement posted on her social media accounts. “What I am hearing about the allegations against R. Kelly is absolutely horrifying and indefensible.”

Lady Gaga at the Critics' Choice Awards on January 13, 2019. AFP
Lady Gaga at the Critics' Choice Awards on January 13, 2019. AFP

'We are deeply horrified by the stories of abuse'

Chance the Rapper has also appeared to distance himself from Kelly in light of the renewed abuse allegations, with their joint track Somewhere in Paradise disabled on Spotify. Phoenix has issued an apology for working with the rapper on a remix in 2013, saying the French band was “deeply horrified by the stories of abuse” in a statement. “We regret that we were not both more informed and more discerning when we worked with him previously.”

American singer Ciara has also cut ties with Kelly, with a representative for the R&B star telling Variety she is “taking steps” to have her collaboration with the rapper, Promise (Go and Get Your Tickets Mix), taken down.

Kelly is reportedly under investigation regarding his alleged crimes, though has repeatedly denied accusations of abuse in recent years.

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Updated: January 15, 2019 11:28 AM

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