R. Kelly apparently has no fans in Ohio.
The musician was set to make an appearance in Columbus, Ohio for the Fashion Meets Music Festival Labor Day weekend, however due to the singer’s infamous and rocky past, the artist was cut from the line up.
According to reports, as soon as R. Kelly was scheduled to appear on August 29, many fans, locals, and bands protested the rapper’s attendance on social media due to allegations surrounding his involvement in child pornography and sexual abuse.
Some of the many allegations against the singer include sexual acts with a minor, soliciting a minor for child pornography, and the videotaping and producing of child pornography. R. Kelly was later charged with 21 counts of having sex with a minor in 2008, but was found not guilty.
Regardless of the verdict, R. Kelly’s past did not sit well with locals and attendees of the music festival.
One band in particular, Saintsencea, threatened to withdraw from the concert on their website stating that “[Kelly’s] selection as a performer ignores his very serious allegations of sexual violence and assault”.
The Independent as well reported that local radio station WCBE 90.5 FM jumped the bandwagon and backed out due to the desires of listeners and Columbus City Schools . The general manager of the station, Dan Mushalko, issued a statement regarding the reason for their decision.
“Obviously, since they represent children and they represent teenagers, they didn’t want us associated with the event if R. Kelly was a part of it,” Mushalko stated.
He continued: “So whether you looked at it from our internal ethics, or the feedback from our listeners and the school district, it came down to everything saying, ‘You just can’t do it.”
With the large amounts of dissatisfaction to have R. Kelly preform at Columbus’ festival, the festival organizers made the valid decision to boot the artist from their show.
On Tuesday, both the Festival and R. Kelly released statements regarding the singer’s departure.
“Fashion Meets Music Festival and headlining artist R Kelly have come to the mutual decision to cancel Kelly’s upcoming performance at the inaugural Fashion Meets Music Festival”, festival organizers informed locals and attendees.
A publicist for R. Kelly as well added on Tuesday that “R Kelly is sorry to disappoint his fans, but looks forward to seeing them in the near future during one of his upcoming tours.”
As for now, there are no plans to replace R. Kelly for the Fashion Meets Music Festival.