Chris Brown: The Impact of the Rihanna Incident on his Stardom

Bintano
5 Min Read

Chris Brown’s 2009 attack of then-girlfriend Rihanna cost him levels of fame and stardom Michael Jackson enjoyed at his career peak, according to fellow musical artist Fat Joe.

Fat Joe, 53, gave his take on how Brown’s violent attack has overshadowed his talents in the 15-plus years since the With You singer, 35, assaulted Rihanna, 36, in a vehicle in the Hancock Park neighborhood of Los Angeles after a pre-Grammys party on February 8, 2009.

‘If Chris Brown never got into the controversy with Rihanna, we would be calling him Michael Jackson right now,’ Fat Joe said on the social media platform Instagram Live this past weekend. ‘Not like Michael Jackson — Michael Jackson.’

The New York City native made clear his high opinion of Brown’s abilities as an entertainer, calling the Forever artist ‘the most talented singer, artist, performer, hitmaker of our time.’

Fat Joe urged the public to forgive Brown – who has past lashed out at the incident resurfacing in the years since – for his past transgressions.

Chris Brown: The Impact of the Rihanna Incident on his Stardom

Chris Brown’s 2009 attack of then-girlfriend Rihanna cost him levels of fame and stardom Michael Jackson enjoyed at his career peak, according to fellow musical artist Fat Joe. Brown, 35, pictured Sunday at an event in NYC 

Fat Joe said that Brown's collective talents would have put him on a plane with the late King of Pop, pictured in 1983, had it not been for his past history of domestic violence

Fat Joe said that Brown’s collective talents would have put him on a plane with the late King of Pop, pictured in 1983, had it not been for his past history of domestic violence 

‘There’s nobody even close to Chris Brown, and it’s time we move past it,’ Fat Joe said. ‘It’s been 20-something years that I know of – there’s no more incidents. We gonna let this lifetime go by without saying the truth?’

Fat Joe said that contemporary standards in the entertainment industry have kept people restrained from taking any sort of controversial stance, lest it impact their careers.

‘What happens is, when the truth is an unpopular decision, everybody gets scared to say it,’ Fat Joe said. ‘They get canceled – especially famous people. But you know, the streets – they know what it is. Streets always know, they tell you the truth.’

Fat Joe pointed to the music of convicted sex offender R. Kelly, which he said remains popular despite the artist’s downfall.

‘The streets still bumping R. Kelly,’ he said. ‘He’s in jail, he did terrible things.’

Fat Joe said he feels the time has come to acknowledge Brown’s talents independent of his past transgressions.

‘What I’m tryna say is that it’s a shame that we lying,’ he said, ‘and we not giving it up to the king of R&B.

‘We be thinking he could battle Michael Jackson, that’s all I’m tryna say – I’m not lying – if you really look at his body of work and you look at all his hits, you see what he does,’ he said. 

Fat Joe, pictured last week in NYC, said that contemporary standards in the entertainment industry have kept people restrained from taking any sort of controversial stance, lest it impact their careers

Fat Joe, pictured last week in NYC, said that contemporary standards in the entertainment industry have kept people restrained from taking any sort of controversial stance, lest it impact their careers 

Fat Joe said that in no way does he accept what Brown did in 2009, but noted Brown was a 'little kid' at the age of 19 when the violent incident occurred

Fat Joe said that in no way does he accept what Brown did in 2009, but noted Brown was a ‘little kid’ at the age of 19 when the violent incident occurred 

Fat Joe said that in no way does he accept what Brown did in 2009, but noted Brown was a ‘little kid’ at the age of 19 when the violent incident occurred.

On Instagram Live this past April, Fat Joe compared Brown to the late Tupac Shakur, another enigmatic artist whose seemingly-limitless career potential was derailed by legal problems prior to his murder in September of 1996.

‘Of course, the 2Pac of 2024 has to be Chris Brown,’ Fat Joe said, according to HipHopDX. ‘Chris Brown is considered an alien. If you playing basketball, he’ll bust your ass. If you sing against him, he sing better, he dance better. If he gotta rap, he raps.’

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