If you follow my twitter feed, or really, if you keep up with much music ‘news’ in general you may very well have come across last week’s interview between Will Oldham (donning his interviewer’s cap) and R. Kelly. If not, you’re in for a treat. Held last December in New York—in Kelly’s dressing room prior to his appearance on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon—the interview sheds light on both Oldham’s interest in Kelly’s craft (see Oldham’s cover of Kelly’s “The World’s Greatest” culled from the 2008 EP, Ask Forgiveness) and better yet a peek inside the life of arguably the king of contemporary R&B. Without giving anything away, I will say that if you ever find yourself invited to a party at Kelly’s private home, do attend. Oh, that and “Sam Cooke.”

In other Oldham news, the bard has a new 10″ set for release later this month with the Cairo Gang. All proceeds go to EDGE Outreach to assist the people of Haiti.

MP3: Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy :: The World’s Greatest (R. Kelly)
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6 Responses to “Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy :: The World’s Greatest (R. Kelly)”

  1. […] View full post on Aquarium Drunkard […]

  2. I had no idea that The World’s Greatest was an R Kelly cover. It’s a brilliant song!

  3. I’ve always found Billy’s devotion to the song’s lyrics, specifically in pronouncing “asks” as “acks” the way Kelly does in the original, really interesting. I’ve often been troubled by it as well, unsure whether I felt it came across as just recreating the original performer’s particular cultural English or as mocking it in some vague way. My perspective on this is probably, undoubtedly shaped by being completely unused to hearing white people recreate/mimic Black English pronunciation in any way approaching respectfully outside of the confines of hip-hop.

  4. Whenever I have to defend Kells’s musical genius, I always bring up Bonnie Prince Billy’s obvious love and respect for the man. This interview is a great piece to the amazing puzzle.

  5. @weirdbeard – That and playing “Down Low (Nobody Has To Know)” should always do the trick. Isley’s cameo in the video was a nice touch as well.

  6. Honestly, I’ve never heard of Mr. Billy but I dig what he’s saying. More importantly I like his voice. There’s a weird joy and pain thing going on within. That probably sounds lame but I can’t seem to find any other words to express myself at the moment. Dope.

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