Known as the King of R&B and King of Pop-Soul, American music star, R. Kelly, has been active in the industry for thirty years and still counting. All through these years, he has had a highly successful career, releasing 12 solo studio albums as of 2019 with 35 top 10 hits on the R&B chart and 11 #1 hits on the hip-hop songs chart. 75 million of his records have also been sold all over the world, establishing him as the most successful R&B artist of the 1990s as well as one of the best-selling music artists in the US and the world. Owing to that, R Kelly’s net worth has always been a subject that stirs the interest of so many people.
What R Kelly’s Net Worth Should Have Been
Born Robert Sylvester Kelly, R Kelly is known by millions of people across the world for his music but in recent times, more people have come to know him as a result of the numerous scandals he has been involved in for a very long time. This is believed to be one of the causes of his financial woes as the Chicago native is reported to have paid millions of dollars as settlement for various legal cases brought against him by women who claimed that he had abused them sexually.
Considering the weight of success he has enjoyed in his career, R Kelly’s net worth would have easily been around $150 and 200 million. That’s far from the case as the singer’s net worth is currently estimated to be around $1 million. Keep reading to find out the reason behind the plunge of his wealth.
How R Kelly’s Net Worth Nosedived To $1 Million
The singer was said to have also lost a large chunk of his net worth following his divorce from Andrea Lee, his former backup dancer who he was married to from 1996 to 2009 and had three children with. In the year 2012, it was reported that Kelly was $5 million deep in debt as a result of unpaid taxes which dates as far back as seven years. In the same year, his house in Olympia Fields, Chicago, was foreclosed for failure to pay the mortgage since 2010 and has long been sold. In 2018, R Kelly was evicted from two homes located in Atlanta following his failure to meet up with payment of over $30,000 and as of January 2019, he lives in a townhouse in Chicago’s Trump Tower as a tenant.
In a 19-minutes-long song titled “I Admit” which he released on Spotify in July 2018, the singer addressed many of the allegations against him and also claimed that he was broke. He revealed that his only reason for going on tours was to pay his rent and admits to being indebted to the IRS to the tune of $20 million in addition to borrowing a couple of millions from his label to pay his bills. The bad condition of R Kelly’s net worth is worsened by the fact that he cannot even tour in many countries overseas as a result of his various scandals and his tours in the United States are very often marred by protests.
In addition to that, a number of streaming services including Spotify, have ceased to serve his songs in their public playlists. Thus, even though Kelly’s songs can still be streamed by individuals from their accounts on Spotify, none of his songs will be recommended in such public playlists as Discover Weekly or any other playlist and radio channel curated by Spotify.
In January 2019, reports that R Kelly had renovated his Chicago recording studio multiple times without permission prompted building inspectors in the city to conduct a search in the building. The 8,000 square-foot studio which Kelly rented since 2017 was put up for sale at the price of $4 million at the time the inspection was carried out. At that same time, the owner of the property took legal action against the entertainer, seeking seven months rent he owed which amounted to $167,000 at the time he filed the suit.
Things didn’t get any better for the musician. On the 14th of January 2019, R Kelly’s record label, RCA, which is owned by Sony, revealed that they were dropping him. This implies that both Kelly and Sony will continue to make profits from all of his past music releases as long as they are in distribution but all of his future music releases would be on hold. Consequently, even though the singer has two more albums to tidy up before his most recent contract with RCA/Sony is over, the record label has refused to provide him with money to shoot his music videos, thus shrinking the chances of improving R Kelly’s net worth.
Sony’s decision to part ways with the platinum-selling R&B singer was as a result of a bombshell documentary titled Surviving R. Kelly. It details R. Kelly’s alleged sexual assault that has gone on for years.
As though enough damages haven’t been done already, the Grammy-winning artist was arrested towards the end of February 2019 for multiple counts of sexual abuse which includes claims that three out of his four victims were underage. Unable to provide his $1 million bail requirement which could have been satisfied with a $100,000 payment, R Kelly was forced to spend some days in custody until a lady named Valencia Love paid for his bail. Unfortunately, while he was still in jail, his former wife Andrea filed a lawsuit against him for failure to pay $160,000 worth of child support.