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.
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.
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.
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 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'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.
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.
'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'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.
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.
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.
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.
I have Marvin Gaye's driver's license. His wife sent it to me, because she really loved my 'Happy People' record. She said that she thought it represented the sprit of her husband. The license is from California. I get inspired every time I look at it.
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.
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.
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.
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.