Well, I believe that the depth of your struggle can determine the height of your success. I was inspired to come out of everything I've been through and end up in a place where I never thought that I would be.
Love has never failed. It has won every battle. And today and forever more it will go on undefeated. I'm also a very loving person.
They say marriage will change you but it didn't change me. Being in love changed me.
I only feel sorry for weak people. And mostly what I've come to find is that the weak people are the ones that are the haters.
In life, you have people that love to party. That's me. People that love God. That's me. People that love sex. That's me. People that love people. That's me. And people that make mistakes. That's me also.
I will always do R. Kelly - I'm not perfect, but I'm perfectly me.
Always believe what you see - with your own eyes, that is. Always believe what you see. That's the best way to go about this business. I've heard a lot of things about a lot of people, and it was never true.
People can say whatever they want about you without knowing the facts. They can criticize you without even knowing you, and hate you when they don't even know you. All of a sudden, you're, like, the bin Laden of America. Osama bin Laden is the only one who knows exactly what I'm going through.
I walk around every day with a radio playing constantly in my head, and this radio station plays a lot of hits. But it's all my songs, so that's something to be excited about 24 hours a day.
I'm very responsible. And with ability you have to have responsibility. I'm not perfect. But you have to make sure that your children will know that daddy makes mistakes.
I am very conscious of who I am as an artist and as an inspirational person.
To hear the appreciation, the screams - that's what any of us need. We're at our best when we're wanted.
Everywhere I go, from malls to restaurants to sold-out tours overseas and back, everywhere I've been, I get nothing but love.
I learnt a whole lot from my mother. About music, relationships, being a good person, loving people, the whole of life. I learnt about everything from her. Every single day I think about her. All through the day.
You know, I'm no different from a fireman. You got to run into a fire no matter how big the blaze is.
I started learning everybody's riffs, from Donny Hathaway to Jeffrey Osborne to James Ingram. That helped me create my own style of singing.
Other kids could read, other kids could write, other kids could spell, they could do math. I felt like an alien. I felt like an outcast. I felt like, 'What is going to happen to me?'
I've been blackmailed a billion times. I've been sued for ridiculous things. At one point in my life, I was an ATM machine. But I'm used to that. You don't get used to it, but I'm used to the fact that people will do this, even your own family members, and I don't hate none of them.
I've programmed myself musically to come up with love-feeling tracks that are romantic, sexy, but classy, all in one. And that's the challenge. Once I create that music, then the lyrical content starts to come - you know, the stories and things like that.
I was the highest-paid street performer, probably, in the history of Chicago. I was making like $800 a day.
I started to wear the sunglasses all the time at school, hiding behind them... I'd walk down the hallways, practically hugging the wall, dragging my head against it like I was crazy.
When you're me, when you're R. Kelly, everybody wants a piece of you, and if you don't give 'em a piece they'll find a way to get a piece of you one way or the other.
When a person is found not guilty, they're found not guilty.
When I think of musical geniuses, I think of Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson and Prince. That's who comes to mind.
Downstairs in my house, I have a museum room. I keep all of my awards down there, and childhood photos, and even all the clothes I've worn on tour, in videos and on album covers.
My greatest competition is, well, me.
When you go to church, if the pastor at some point doesn't make you laugh, he probably ain't gonna make you join.
I started calling myself the Pied Piper, when I started using the flute sound in my music.
As a businessman, I saw club tracks as a new franchise that could be profitable for years to come. It was like being in McDonald's and realizing that even though cheeseburgers and fries sold big, you could also make money serving up McRibs, which are always available for a limited time only.
You don't see me in the club. And the reason is because I would rather be in the studio mixing these musical potions. Now sometimes they blow up in my face, and there's a lot of smoke. But that's who I am. Music is what I do.
If I'm going to be a leader then I have to go places that other people are afraid to go to. That's what makes a leader. To be not afraid to step out and go over the frontline. To stare darkness right in the face.
I don't have a job, so I sit in the studio all the time and think of stupid stuff to do.
I try to write life and not songs. People live life, and when you write life, you're going to mess around and touch somebody's heart, and they'll relate to you and what you're singing about.
You don't want R&B singers to get into beef. Leave that to the rappers, let them do that - R&B, be classy.
If there's no fire, there's no scream. If there's no scream, then no one hears you and no one comes to help you in the first place. The depth of my struggle has definitely determined the height of my success. To be able to teach my kids not just about success but about the struggle that comes with it.
Biggie was a lyrical genius: he was a musical painter with words. As he rapped, you would see the picture come to life as you heard his story. You hear a lot of rappers rap; you hear a lot of singers sing, but you don't see the movie in your head the way you do when you hear Biggie rap.
I wouldn't be able to do the songs as long as I've been doing if I didn't feel the pulse of the world. But I can feel people and I know what they want. I feel like I know how they are, because I am the people. And I just have a gift.
I still feel like I'm alone at times - even if I'm in the midst of a million people. Because no one - including me - understands my mind creatively. I haven't really been formally introduced to my gift yet. I feel like I'm still on the runway.
There are so many songs in me that haven't been born yet. So I can't call myself a genius, but I never turn away a compliment, and I feel like I'm on my way to that mountain.
I'm in love with music, and I'm pregnant by it. It's like having twins. Or triplets. Or eight-lets!
My friend, there is no end when it comes to 'Trapped In The Closet.'
I gave a Christmas party last year - well, two Christmases ago - 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.
I love the smell of a theater. The old rooms and the carpet and all that stuff. I love to tell stories. Even before I was doing music, I saw myself as a director. So most of my songs come in a play form, you know, where there are characters and stories, so I like to go beyond just the song sometimes.
'Trapped In The Closet' lives in a place on the earth on its own. It pays its own rent, it's its own landlord, it owns the building, it's everything. And it's so separate from what R. Kelly does; that's the great thing about it.
I want people to notice my writing abilities are real and that I'm not just stuck in one situation.
If you're gonna tell your life story, you gotta be honest, or don't do it.
I'm a lover of all sorts of music, which makes me a chameleon when it comes to performing anything, whether it's opera or whatever. As long as it's good and it feels good, I'm going to cling to it.
I used to get criticized for doing a 'Bump & Grind' then turning around and doing a gospel song. But the truth is I'm glad I have a gift that allows me to switch lanes.
My music has shaken hands with the world somehow - it's a beautiful disease, and I'm glad I got it.
I'm not gonna be broke, like my mom was broke, my uncles were broke, my sisters didn't have money, my cousins on down.
Being single has its ups and downs, and being in a relationship has its ups and downs. It depends on how you balance it and how you handle your problems within your relationship.
'Love Letter' is a concept album, and whenever I do a concept album - and I love doing concept albums more than any other kind of album - it allows me to get dressed, in a way, musically.
You save money so your kids can go to college - no matter what they are or who they are. They're your kids; you gotta support them.
I'm not an A student; I'm not even a B student, but I've gotten a lot better with the reading because of texts. And I can voice-text and say whatever I want to people.
Before I can finish one song, another is knocking on my door in my head.
Not only did I get an A in music but I got an A in ladies.
Once I started singing, I didn't have to try to be cool. I was just one of the coolest guys around.
I don't really know the story of the Pied Piper. I don't read stories, first of all. I just remember either a rabbit or a rat leading people out of the village with a flute. That's all I can tell you.
I've heard people have written books of me. People don't even know me, but they've written a book on me. You ever heard of hearing it from the horse's mouth? I'm the horse.
My fans have always loved my metaphors.
In my life, I wanted to feel tall. I wanted to be somebody. I wanted to be tall as the Sears Tower. I wanted to be on top of the Sears Tower. I wanted to be as strong as the Sears Tower feels.
I'm not very good at picking stuff up off the radio. It takes me way too long to learn other people's music.
I have always been infatuated with country music.
Music is very powerful and can make you feel whatever it is. If you listen to gospel, you're going to feel thankful, and you're going to want to call up people that you hate and tell them that you love them. When you listen to sexual music, it gets you in the mood.
I love blues. My grandfather did blues.
As with all the other rappers I've worked with, Biggie and I shared common ground. Even though Biggie grew up in Brooklyn and I grew up in Chicago, we came from the same 'hood.
My mother always told me if you write about life, you will always be in the game. Just don't write songs... write life. I decided to take her up on that.
My mom actually had a band called Six Pack - even though there were seven of them - who went around Chicago performing popular songs. Her voice was like Gladys Knight mixed with Aretha Franklin.
I've really been writing a lot of country songs. I used to get criticized for doing a 'Bump & Grind,' then turning around and doing a gospel song. But the truth is I'm glad I have a gift that allows me to switch lanes.
I just never, in my career, got into doing a lot of press.
When I met Michael Jordan on a basketball court at an athletic club - we hooped together in Chicago - he came to me and asked me if I wanted to do a song for his upcoming movie. I was like, 'Yeah!' I didn't even ask what it was.
'Love Letter' reminds me of 'Chocolate Factory' and 'Happy People.' It's a little bit of both of those, yeah. I just wanted it to be classy, man. And romantic. And maybe 10 percent sexy.
I had a cyst on my tonsils, and I couldn't sing. I had to have an operation.
I know that I'm not a criminal. People say that, but my music speaks for itself. And I believe in my music.
I have always been infatuated with country music. Country music tells stories, and I've always loved to tell stories. I said that when I establish myself as an artist that can do pretty much anything I want to do in music, I'm going to make a country album.
I want to be able to be a father to my kids, where I've never seen my father, but my kids can see me whenever they want, so that was broken.
I've called myself the Pied Piper, I've called myself the Weatherman, I've called myself Kellz, I've called myself a lot of things, changing the name, switching it up, just flipping, remixing. But never to harm anybody. Never to make a deep statement for people to dig into and figure it out.
R. Kelly is an image, a brand. That's my job. There's a whole other side of me that's Robert, who is a father, a friend. But then I put on the game face and go into the studio and do the music. That's just another day at the office.
I've always wanted to write movies - I always used to tell my mom that I wanted to be a director.
I have fans, and I have family that love me, and I have my music, and I have my breath going in and out.
I have to say, it was fun doing this 'Love Letter' album because, hey, man, love has never failed. It has won every battle. And today and forevermore, it will go on undefeated. I'm also a very loving person.
I don't want fans mad at me, so I gotta give them what they expect and what they want.
I feel that I am pregnant by music, and it is the father and mother of my child.
You're younger, you might want to go to clubs and kick it, but as you get older, you start seeing that life has more meaning to it. The people that you love are the people you want to start trusting and start wanting them to trust you and start respecting them.
My whole goal in life was to reach that certain success where people will say, 'Hey, that guy can do anything. He's the Evel Knievel of music. He's jumping over 15 buses!'
When I first came in the business, I had a couple of close calls on planes going to London for shows. There was one time where the plane had to fly around until a storm ended, and then we started having a question about fuel, so we had to go through the storm. It was the worst thing that ever happened in my life. That really messed me up.
My mother wasn't rich, and I never seen my father. I was a street performer. I've been shot. And now I'm known around the world, and I've touched a lot of people with my music. That's one of the great testimonies that's gonna go down in history.
You know, I love plays. I love the smell of a theater. The old rooms and the carpet and all that stuff. I love to tell stories. Even before I was doing music, I saw myself as a director.
I don't want to just go out and do song to song to song. I like to create things before the song actually kicks in, little things you do to excite the crowd.
When you hear romantic music, it makes you want to take your girl out to dinner or buy her something or take her out in the moonlight or take her on a walk.
I'm no angel, but I'm no monster, either.
I couldn't believe I was working with Michael Jackson. I thought, growing up as a kid, I thought Michael was a cartoon.
I've always had mostly women come out to see me perform. That's the reason the guys show up; they know R. Kelly is going to draw the women. Most of the songs I'm singing are catering to women anyway.
I've done a lot of things that I regret.
There's a time and place for everything. You're younger, you might want to go to clubs and kick it, but as you get older, you start seeing that life has more meaning to it. The people that you love are the people you want to start trusting and start wanting them to trust you and start respecting them.
When I was performing on streets, there was no pressure. People accepted me. They loved me without knowing me.
'Trapped in the Closet' is pretty much forever. I've got a leash on this thing now. I'm going to walk it.
I'm the Ali of today. I'm the Marvin Gaye of today. I'm the Bob Marley of today. I'm the Martin Luther King, or all the other greats that have come before us. And a lot of people are starting to realise that now.
'The Notebook' was beautiful, and I was crying because its hero and heroine had died together.
All the sounds on 'Trapped in the Closet' - the knockin' on the door, when I grab the keys, when I walk down the stairs, the car horns - we sampled all of those things around my house.