Chaka Khan didn’t mince her words or thoughts about the state of the R&B industry during a recent interview on The Originals podcast with host Andrew Goldman.
The 70-year-old soul icon sounded off about her frustration with Rolling Stone for placing her at No. 29 on their “200 Greatest Singers of All Time” list. The Chicago native was given a spot slightly behind soulful titans like Adele and long-time alleged frenemy Mary J. Blige.
During her candid chat with Goldman, Khan slammed the famed music mag for their rankings, calling the staff “blind bat b–ches” for placing her a notch lower than both R&B powerhouses.
“They are blind as a motherf–king bat! They need hearing aids… These must be the children of Helen Keller!” the “Sweet Thing” hitmaker said, according to Page Six.
Khan, a veteran in the R&B and Soul genre shared that prior to the interview, she had never heard of the Rolling Stone list. But the singer reassured Goldman that she wasn’t taking the snub at face value.
“I didn’t even know what the hell you were talking about, so obviously this doesn’t mean a great deal to me,” she said. “These people don’t quantify or validate me in any way.”
Rightfully so. With a career spanning over five decades, Chaka Khan has been honored with numerous awards and accolades, making her one of the most celebrated artists of all time.
Chaka Khan’s incredible career
She’s left an indelible mark on the American music repertoire with hits that have made fans dance and sing all around the world, including “Sweet Thing,” “I Feel For You” and “I Am Every Woman.”
Khan’s impressive list of awards could blow many of the women placed above her out of the water. The star has won 10 Grammy Awards throughout her career, including Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal for “Ain’t Nobody” and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for “I Feel For You.”
In 2021, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Rufus, the Chicago R&B group that helped her breakout into the industry in 1973.
The band’s first album with Khan, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, was a huge success, spawning infectious singles like “Tell Me Something Good” and “You Got the Love.” The gold-selling project topped the R&B album chart for six consecutive weeks after it was released.
Khan’s major accolade came several years after she was awarded her very own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and honored with the BET Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to the music industry.
Chaka Khan slams the placement of Mariah Carey and Adele on the Rolling Stone list
Khan knows where she stands in music history and isn’t afraid of telling it like it is. Further along in the interview, the musical trailblazer slammed the rankings for Mariah Carey, Joan Baez, and a few other stars, before giving props to icons like Aretha Franklin and Whitney Houston.
When asked about Carey’s ranking at No. 5, Khan hilariously joked: “That must be payola or some s–t like that.” She also criticized the music publication for listing Adele at No. 22. “Ok, I quit,” the R&B diva said as she threw her hands up in the air.
Khan wasn’t thrilled with famed folk singer Joan Baez’s placement on the list either. The “Blowin’ In The Wind” hitmaker came in at No. 189 for her historic contributions to the genre.
“Let’s be honest, the b-tch cannot sing!” Khan quipped, before admitting, “Now she was a good writer.”
Now, Khan did stop to give thanks to a few singers throughout her fiery tirade. The soul crooner jumped with joy when Goldman told her that the late “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin, topped the list at No. 1
“As she f–king should be. Thank you, there’s justice somewhere!” the singer shouted. She also praised Rolling Stone for giving Whitney Houston the No. 2 spot.
“Great… I’m the one who introduced her to [music mogul] Clive [Davis]. And I introduced her to the business,” Khan revealed. “I made her mother bring her down to the studio and sing background with me. Her and Luther Vandross. They both sang background for me on my albums,” Khan said.
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