.

R. Kelly Reveals Secret to 'Black Panties' Sound

'I keep mixing it up,' he says

R. Kelly in the studio.
Mel D Cole
October 30, 2013 2:45 PM ET

This past September, R. Kelly announced that he'd be releasing his 12th album, Black Panties, in November, but recently pushed back the release date to December 10th. The only song from the album to come out so far is an autobiographical cut that features 2 Chainz titled "My Story." The track contains four minutes of catchy, optimistic R&B, a "silken trap groove" — as Rolling Stone's track review says — reminiscent of previous Kelly tracks like "Ignition" but with a slightly harder edge. It was a return-to-form for the singer, whose two most recent albums, 2010's Love Letter and 2012's Write Me Back, drew heavily from the influence of classic soul. 

Where Does R.Kelly's 'R. Kelly' Rank on Our 100 Best Albums of the Nineties?

On Black Panties, he says that he wanted to make the kind of record that continues the sound he started in 1993 on his debut album, 12 Play. "I love that I can play around with all types of music," he tells Rolling Stone. "I did Love Letter and Write Me Back and those were fun albums for me to do, because they took me back to music I love. But I wanted to change lanes with this new album and remind people of the TP-2.com and 12 Play style of music I can do — 'Kellz music!'"

"I like that I can change lanes and do all different kinds of music," he adds. "Fans can never accuse R. Kelly of doing the same thing, I keep mixing it up." 

Additional reporting by Patrick Doyle

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Bleeding Love”

Leona Lewis | 2007

In 2008, The X Factor winner Leona Lewis backed up her U.K. singing competition victory with an R&B anthem for the ages: "Bleeding Love," an international hit that became the best-selling song of the year. The track was co-penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder (whose radio dominance would continue with songs such as Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It") and solo artist Jesse McCartney, who was inspired by a former girlfriend, Gossip Girl actress Katie Cassidy. Given the song's success, McCartney didn't regret handing over such a personal track: "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com