While there are many things R. Kelly admits to in his new song “I Admit,” he repeatedly denies the numerous allegations of sexual assault that have been leveled against him throughout his career — including those relating to his alleged “sex cult.”
On Monday morning, the 51-year-old R&B singer announced the release of the track. “Today is the day you’ve been waiting for,” he captioned the tweet, which contained a link to the 19-minute song.
“I admit I done made some mistakes / And I have some imperfect ways,” Kelly sings at the beginning of the track, before asking: “How they gon’ say I don’t respect these women, when all I’ve done is represent / Take my career and turn it upside down, ’cause you mad I’ve got some girlfriends.”
“Said I’m abusing these women, what the f— that’s some absurd s—,” he continued. “They’re brainwashed, really? / kidnapped, really? / Can’t eat, really? / Real talk, that s— sound silly.”
“What’s the definition of a cult? / What’s the definition of a sex slave?” Kelly asks later in his song. “Go to the dictionary, look it up / Let me know, I’ll be here waiting.”
In 2017, Buzzfeed’s Jim DeRogatis published a report outlining what has been called a sex “cult” populated by Kelly’s female companions. Additionally, Kelly’s former ex-girlfriends Kitti Jones and Asante McGee have spoken out against the alleged abuse by the singer’s hand. His ex-wife Andrea Kelly has also claimed she endured six years of abuse from Kelly during their 13-year-long marriage.
Reps for Kelly have denied all the accusations made against the singer, previously telling PEOPLE in a statement that he “has close friendships with a number of women who are strong, independent, happy, well cared for and free to come and go as they please.”
“We deny the many dark descriptions put forth by instigators and liars who have their own agenda for seeking profit and fame,” a rep said. “All of the women targeted by the current media onslaught are legal adults of sound mind and body, with their own free will. Law enforcement officials in Atlanta and Chicago previously have made ‘wellness’ visits to check on the women in question and have found everything to be safe and sound.”
In “I Admit,” Kelly also called out Spotify for removing him from all official playlists in light of the mounting allegations against him, as well as DeRogatis — who had previously reported on a video that allegedly showed Kelly having sex with an underage girl. While the singer was initially indicted on 21 counts of child pornography, he was eventually acquitted.
During the song, in which he said he was at “rock bottom” and “broke,” Kelly also claimed he had been “touched” by a family member, from the time he was a child, “to the age 14.” Kelly previously addressed his own sexual assault claims in his 2012 autobiography The Soulacoaster: The Diary of Me, as well as in a 2016 GQ profile.
Following the release of “I Admit,” many social media users spoke out against the song — and called for the end of Kelly’s career.
“R. Kelly literally sings ‘I admit it, I did it.’ Someone, pull the plug on his career please,” wrote one social media user.
Added another: “R. Kelly dropped a 20 minute emotional trap song called ‘I Admit’ where he said his music is a service to the country and his accusers and their families are liars and scammers. Dude finished.”
Added rapper Talib Kweli: “I just read the lyrics to R Kelly’s new 19 minute song called ‘I Admit It I Did It.’ His lack of self awareness is atrocious. There are several lyrics I take offense to. The one I will address is ‘I’m just a man.’ I am also a man. I would never use that to defend this behavior.”