R&B mogul R. Kelly has been a staple in households for over two decades. Responsible for hits like âI Believe I Can Fly,â âHappy People,â and the ever evolving musical soap opera âTrapped In The Closet,â this singer reveals how a seemingly innocent retro party inspired him to create his chart topping new album âLove Letter.â
While hosting a Christmas party at his home in which the guests were required to dress up as if they were back in the 60âs, R. Kelly donned the persona of the legendary singer, Sam Cooke and performed for nearly 1,000 people.
The icon told Interview magazine, “I gave a Christmas party where I did a Sam Cooke show. I didn’t perform as R. Kelly. I performed the Sam Cooke show from 1964, when he performed at the Copacabana.”
At the time, the star was working on his album entitled ‘Zodiac’. However, after going back in time for that one night R. Kelly felt compelled to shelf ‘Zodiac’ in search of a more soulful sound.
“I had this feeling that we really tapped in spiritually to that time. We did go back in time that night. And when I came back to the present, if you will, I’d brought back some goodies, because when I went in the studio-I was working on the ‘Zodiac’ album, which was all, like, the bump ‘n’ grinds- I couldn’t work on it because I was so overwhelmed and overpowered and pretty much musically abducted by this other period. So I switched and started working on ‘Love Letter’.”
R. Kelly went on to say that songs on âLove Letterâ have so much depth because they tell a story and allow him to embody a different persona. “I love doing concept albums more than any other kind of album-it allows me to get dressed, in a way, musically.”
To this R&B heavyweight, his 1oth album is the best of both worlds, “‘Love Letter’ reminds me of ‘Chocolate Factory’ and ‘Happy People’. It’s a little bit of both of those. I just wanted it to be classy, man and romantic. And maybe 10 percent sexy.”
Do you believe R. Kelly captured the essence of the Sam Cooke era in ‘Love Letter’?