Rufus, Chuck and Kathy, oh my: R. Kelly's latest single makes his Space Jam contributions sound like Mozart.
Rufus, Chuck and Kathy, oh my: R. Kelly's latest single makes his Space Jam contributions sound like Mozart.

Crapped in the Closet

When did insanity and stupidity become a prerequisite for fame? One look at the newspapers makes it obvious that headlines have become a competition for the nuttiest celebrities to battle over. Why, you damn near have to pee on a girl just to make it in this crazy world.

Somehow, R. Kelly has risen to the top of the charts for the second time since his alleged encounter with an underage fan, and once again, his success is all about the sex. 2003s smash hit Ignition was already pretty brazenI think Kelly was still getting a few drops out while he recorded the afterparty-loving hook for that onebut this year, he must truly believe he can fly.

TP:3, which hit stores on Tuesday, has just as much horny material to appease both Kellys fans and haters. Sex in the Kitchen sets the tone (and the table) with kitchen metaphors like Im ready to toss your salad/While makin love, girl, Ill be feastin. Mmm, mmm, bitch! But its the end of the album that has everyone talking. Trapped in the Closet, the five-part closing track, has leaked one piece at a time for the past few weeks on radio, MTV and BET. The series recounts an infidelity-packed story where everybodys screwing everybody behind everybody elses back.

Cheating spouses? Check. Homosexual confessions? Yup. Guns, cops and condoms? All here.

Oh, my landthis has to be the stupidest song ever. The exact same beat and song structure repeat for 15 minutes (using water drop sounds for percussiongross!). Kelly speak-sings with nary a melody like hes ad-libbing the story to a Jerry Springer episode, and his rhymes and details are so weak, trite and laughable that the song seems better suited for a Comedy Central parody.

When he tries to escape a cheating wifes house, he rhymes go out the window with we on the fifth flo. When the husband and his gay lover arrive, the names Rufus, Chuck and Kathy get thrown around like chairs on a trashy TV show. Even funnier is when Kelly gets caught because of his phone ringing, and he shouts in overzealous, American Idol fashion, I tried my best to quickly put it on viii-III-iii-braaa-AAA-aaate!

Rufus? Fifth flo? Vibrate? When a Man Loves a Woman this is not. But Kelly worked the soap opera angle by gradually releasing each chapter with mega-cheesy music videos to match. What a hookfans wondered what the tabloid-tarnished Kelly might say in the next chapter or what weird turn the story would take, and soon enough, the song became a phenomenon.

Really, Kelly has become the Schick Quattro of R&B. You know, the four-blade razor that immediately came out after Gillette made the first three-blade. Its as if he heard Ushers two-part hit from last year, Confessions, and got pissed. Usher thinks hes dope? Ill show his black ass. FIVE! Thats how apologetic a mothafucka I can be!

But thats nothing. Kelly always tries to stay ahead of the R&B game, which means hes not sitting idly by and waiting for Usher to record an eight-part response. In an amazing turn of good fortune, I secured an advance, super-secret copy of Shopping at the Mall, the 43-part song hes preparing for release in Spring 2006, and its already being pegged by Pitchfork Media and Spin Magazine as the most important urban achievement of our generation. To understand its depth and beauty, I take you to the song already in progress at chapter 27, Bath and Body Works (which, by the way, has the same melody as Trapped in the Closet).

So we just left Sbarro

Ate too much spaghetti at Sbarro

I look over at my girlfriend

And say, Guess we should go joggin tomorrow

She says, Whatchoo tryin to sayyy,

Are you callin me big n faaat?

(Falsetto) And all the BathandBodyWorksemployeesarelookingatme (end falsetto)

And I say, Oh, baby, I didnt mean that...

The emotional turmoil only gets crazier, especially when it reaches a dramatic peak in chapter 39, Sharper Image.

So she looks up at me

Says, I need that back massager,

And Im all like, Thats great, girl,

But I just cant aff-ahd her

(Drums and singing become louder)

And she starts all huffing and flippin ouuut

So I say Ill buy anything for you-u-UUU-AHH-UUU

And the clerk swipes the Pro-Shiatsu

He swipes the Shiaaatsuuu

He looks up and swipes the Shiaaatsuuu

I say, Baby, itll be fiiine!

One mo time, swipes the Shiaaatsuuu

Says my Visas been declined.. declined.. declined... (echo to silence)

At first listen, the epic sounds like some broke-ass guy inventing stories off the top of his head about the mall, but its really a poignant statement about mall security guards, relationship struggles and Orange Julius. Kellys currently in talks to include up-and-coming guests on the track, such as Slim Thug, Mike Jones and the white kid who freestyle-raps in front of Hot Topic.

Though R. Kelly didnt actually write those mall songs, I give him permission to borrow and use them as he pleases. After all, Im old enough to legally consent.


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