Rita Ora, Tinashe Explain Why They Collaborated With Chris Brown

Rita Ora and Tinashe are both up-and-coming R&B singers who have been making headlines of their own. But both ladies have also received their share of criticism for collaborating with the always-controversial Chris Brown.

Rita Ora worked with Chris Brown on their single “Body On Me,” which included a very flirty music video. Many of Ora’s fans slammed the British pop star for collaborating with the R&B singer. Brown first caused controversy in 2009 when he physically abused his ex-girlfriend, Rihanna, after the MTV Video Music Awards.

But Rita didn’t seem fazed by Chris’ past. In a recent interview with Refinery29, she said that she doesn’t think his history with domestic abuse “has nothing to do with her.” Rita said that she’s just a fan of Chris’ work, which is why she chose to work with him.

“Honestly, it was so easy. It was unforced. He was next door recording at the same LA studio, and I walked in and said, ‘Hey, there’s this song I need you to hear, I want you to be involved in.’ It was that simple. It was, like, artist to artist.

“I didn’t think that far ahead (to the abuse). I’m just a fan of his music and I wanted to work as a musician with another musician, really. All that other stuff has nothing to do with me.”

Meanwhile, Tinashe collaborated with Chris Brown on the track “Player,” which reached pop radio’s Top 40. The song, which is currently at No. 10 on rhythmic radio, rose four places to No. 40. It only received 1,108 weekly plays, according to Headline Planet. That’s probably because Tinashe has received her share of criticism for working with both Chris Brown and R. Kelly. In addition, to working with Brown, Tinashe teamed up with Kelly on the track “Let’s Be Real Now.”

The singer has received an open letter from Nylon Magazine on Thursday, Dec. 10, about her recent collaborations with both controversial men. The “2 On” singer took to Twitter to address the letter and add how “unbothered” she is about the men’s controversial pasts. Tinashe also faved tweets from fans saying that Nylon was being sexist for attacking the singer instead of the men themselves.

Later that day, Nylon’s vice president also took to Twitter to exchange tweets with Tinashe.

But the singer insists that she’s not a supporter of R. Kelly’s past actions. She says that she only respects his work, which is why she chose to collaborate with him. But Tinashe does admit she’s guilty of loving artists who have a history of abuse. She then responded to fans who also slammed the singer for working with these men.

But Tinashe is standing her ground. She then called out the media for not knowing the “politics” of Chris Brown or R. Kelly’s past or why they even did what they did. She then ended her thoughts by adding that everyone is fighting their own battles and that no one should tell her what to do.

Tinashe isn’t the first singer who’s been slammed for working with R. Kelly. Lady Gaga created her share of controversy when she worked with both R. Kelly and Terry Richardson on the music video “Do What U Want.” An alleged inside source told Page Six that Kelly played a doctor in the video, while Gaga played the role of his patient. He then told Gaga, “I’m putting you under, and when you wake up, you’re going to get pregnant.” The video would have showed a man “doing whatever he wanted” to an unconscious Gaga. The singer was slammed for working with the two men, who have a history of sexual exploitation and assault allegations.

“Gaga had a video directed by an alleged sexual predator, starring another sexual predator. With the theme, ‘I’m going to do whatever I want with your body?’ It was literally an ad for rape.”

The video was shot in September, 2014, and was scheduled for release in December of that year. In January, 2015, Gaga posted a message on her website explaining that the video was delayed by former employees who “betrayed” her by “gravely mismanaging” her “time and health.” The video release would have coincided with a Village Voice interview with Jim DeRogatis, who talked about the sexual assault allegations against R. Kelly, who had dozens of lawsuits for allegedly raping underage girls in the 90s. It was also around the time that Terry Richardson was accused of sexually assaulting undiscovered models on the set of his sexually-charged photo shoots.

What are your thoughts on Tinashe and Rita Ora’s responses? Do you think it’s right for artists to collaborate with Chris Brown and R. Kelly, considering their controversial past? Sound off below in the comments section.

[Photos by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images and Andrew Toth/Getty Images]