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Report: R. Kelly is looking for a distributor to release his new album


Photo by Scott Legato/Getty ImagesR. Kelly is reportedly searching for a distributor to release his new album, Billboard has learned. 

Sources tell the publication, the R&B crooner recorded a full-length studio album while still under contract at Sony’s RCA Records. However, in the wake of splitting from his former label home Kelly has since reclaimed ownership of his unreleased works.

As previously reported, RCA scrubbed the 12 Play artist off their roster two weeks after the premiere of Lifetime’s shocking expose Surviving R. Kelly. The monumental decision by the label was heightened by #MuteRKelly protests, which took place directly outside of Sony’s NYC headquarters. 

While it isn’t clear how Kelly will release the forthcoming effort, he reportedly has plenty of options which include operating through an indie distributor, signing with a new label or potentially uploading the project directly onto Spotify. A Spotify rep, however, has since confirmed to Billboard that the direct-upload feature is still in beta and available to only a small number of artists, which does not include Kelly.

In this case, it’s possible the release won’t hit the market as soon as hoped, sources have told the publication.

In spite of the renewed controversy levied against him, streams of Kelly’s catalog have increased by 116 percent in the United States, according to Nielsen Music, where as radio airplay of his chart-topping hits dropped significantly. 

A lawyer for Kelly declined to comment on his music plans.

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