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R. Kelly: ‘Our Culture Hasn’t Really Supported Each Other in Anything’

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*With his latest album not selling as much as you would think, R. Kelly is appealing to fans to support him while touching on the issue of them not supporting his musical endeavors.

The singer’s situation comes amid news of him walking out of an interview he did with HuffPost Live after he was questioned about past allegations of sexual assault. As a result, Kelly became a trending topic nationwide on Twitter on Monday (Dec. 21).

READ THIS RELATED STORY: R. Kelly Walks Off ‘HuffPost Live’ Amid Pedophile Questions: ‘The Interview’s Over’ (Watch)

Kelly’s walkout apparently didn’t do him any favors. The entertainer’s 13th studio effort, “The Buffet,” is having a rough time commercially since it’s release on Dec. 11 as sales have been slow compared to his 2013 album “Black Panties.”

With that, Kelly took to Facebook recently in an effort to get music fans to invest in “The Buffet.”

“I bust my ass going around doing shows to survive, but I do this for the love,” the singer said. “But come on, at some point we gotta start supporting each other. Everybody supports every other category of music, we gotta start supporting each other.”

For Kelly, the issue looks to be deeper than him and his music as he addressed what he described as a lack of support for R&B artists within the black community.

“It’s not about me; it’s not just about supporting R.Kelly,” Kelly told The Grio before doing his interview at HuffPost. “It’s about everybody supporting each other. It’s something that secretly nobody really speaks up about it,” he said. “I feel like for a long time our culture hasn’t really supported each other in anything, whether it’s music or anything else. We’ve been putting each other down a lot, and I think that needs to change.”

READ THIS RELATED STORY: Desperate R. Kelly Pleads to Black Folks to Buy ‘The Buffet’

Comparing the plight of black R&B artists to white counterparts such as Sam Smith and Robin Thicke, Kelly noted that their fans have seemingly shown unwavering support for them.

“White people come out and they support each other, and they buy each other’s music, and they don’t bootleg it… they don’t steal it, they don’t download it; they go out and support each other,” Kelly stated. “That’s why you got a lot of pop artists going 80 million platinum… video played all over the place. We have to as a culture support each other. I never thought about being pop and R&B and all these different categories. I just wanted to be music and wanted everybody to love my music. I don’t care what color they are. I didn’t write my music for no particular color.”

Kelly’s comments are the latest in efforts made by him to defend himself and his music against critics who have found fault with him in recent years.

READ THIS RELATED STORY: R. Kelly Remains Strange and Elusive About Sexual Assault Allegations

As his interview continued, Kelly labeled himself a seasoned ‘General’ in the R&B genre while expressing how he doesn’t want to resort to begging to get people to go out and buy his music.

“My message to my fans first of all is I wouldn’t want them to support anything that they didn’t feel in their heart was worth supporting,” Kelly said. “I don’t like to feel like I’m selling myself, because I’ve proven myself. Any fan out there that knows me, they know I’m real because they can feel it through my music because of everything I’ve been through. Everything I’m going through is channeled into my music, and that’s why people feel my music.

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