FRI 11AM: Plane Flies Over Sony Music HQ in Culver City Demanding Sony Owned RCA Records Cut Ties with Sexual Predator R. Kelly

MEDIA ADVISORY FOR: Friday, January 11, 2019 – 11:00am PT
CONTACT: Brett Abrams | brett@unbendablemedia.com
FRI 11AM: Plane Flies Over Sony Music HQ in Culver City Demanding Sony Owned RCA Records Cut Ties with Sexual Predator R. Kelly
UltraViolet-Commissioned Plane Banner Reads:“RCA/SONY: DROP SEXUAL PREDATOR R KELLY”
LOS ANGELES — On Friday, January 11th, a plane will fly over Sony Music offices in Culver City calling on Sony Music and RCA Records to cut ties with sexual predator, R. Kelly.
The plane, which was commissioned by UltraViolet, a leading national women’s group, comes as RCA Records faces increased backlash over their continued relationship with R. Kelly since the airing of the documentary series Surviving R. Kelly on LifeTime. The documentary series exposed Kelly’s crimes–child pornography, statutory rape, marrying a minor–and the music industry for helping Kelly use his fame to systematically groom Black girls for abuse.
The plane banner will read: “RCA/SONY: DROP SEXUAL PREDATOR R. KELLY.”
WHERE: Sony Music Offices. 10202 Washington Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232.
WHEN: Friday, January 11th. 11:00am – 1:00pm PT
The UltraViolet-commissioned plane follows the leadership of black women like Kenyetta Barnes and Oronike Odeleye, co-founders of the #MuteRKelly campaign, who have been speaking out and organizing against R. Kelly for years. The #MuteRKelly movement worked closely with the producers of the documentary series Surviving R. Kelly and have had successes in cancelling Kelly’s concerts and raising public awareness of his crimes.

“It is long past time for RCA to dump R Kelly and take a stand against abuse. Their inaction is beyond shameful. RCA can no longer pretend that R. Kelly’s music can be separated from his violent actions. Kelly uses his fame, musical talent, fortune, and standing in the music industry to lure in and abuse young Black girls. Even some of his songs are literally inspired by the abuses he has perpetrated,” said Karin Roland, Chief Campaigns Officer at UltraViolet. “Kelly has been able to get away with his years of abuse precisely because his victims are young Black girls who face even more barriers to justice than their white peers. Sixty percent of Black women are sexually abused by age 18, but their abuse is written off because of harmful racial stereotypes that paint Black women and girls as more sexually promiscuous and aggressive than young white girls. We must believe and support Black survivors of sexual violence. It is time all of us work alongside the amazing Black women organizers calling out R. Kelly and his enablers to ensure justice.”

Tens of thousands of people have also signed on to UltraViolet’s petition, echoing the calls of the #MuteRKelly and the #TimesUp movements, urging RCA Records to drop R. Kelly.

Last year, following Spotify’s decision to remove R. Kelly and other infamous abusers from its official playlists, UltraViolet penned an open letter to Spotify CEO applauding the company’s decision, but urging them to take a deeper look at other artists with a history of sexual and physical abuse that continued to profit from Spotify’s promotion. Ultimately, Spotify reversed its decision to hold abusers accountable and added R. Kelly back to official Spotify-promoted playlists.

“When record labels like RCA Records and music platforms like Spotify promote abusers, they allow those abusers to reap in profits, lining their pockets with royalties and expanding their fan base. This normalizes violence against women. We are deeply disappointed that in light of the comprehensive allegations of sexual abuse made public by the “Surviving R. Kelly” documentary, that RCA Records and Spotify continue to choose abusers over the survivors of their crimes,” added Roland.

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UltraViolet is an online community of over 1,000,000 women and men who want to take collective action to expose and fight sexism in the public sector, private sector and the media. Find out more at weareultraviolet.org.