D’Angelo was a force to be reckoned with when he debuted in the mid-90s during the start of the neo-soul movement, but after two-critically acclaimed albums, the soul crooner disappeared into a downward spiral of drug addiction.
It was recently announced that D’Angelo would be giving his first U.S. performance in 12 years at the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans in July. D’Angelo also sat down with GQ magazine for his first interview in 12 years and opened up about his drug addiction as well as his arrest for soliciting a prostitute.
Here are some excerpts from the revealing interview:
D’Angelo on battling his substance abuse during his hiatus: “I didn’t really think I had a problem like that,” he says, taking a hit off a Newport. “I felt like, you know, all I got to do is clean up and I’ll be fine. Just get in the studio and I’ll be fucking fine.”
…on his arrest for soliciting sex from an undercover officer: “It was just me making a stupid decision, a wrong turn, on the wrong night. I’m not the role-model motherfucker. Look at all the shit that I’ve been in.”
…on an instance with a female fan: “One time I got mad when a female threw money at me onstage, and that made me feel fucked-up, and I threw the money back at her,” he says. “ I was like, ‘I’m not a stripper.’
When Madonna turned 39, she asked him to sing “Happy Birthday” at her party. One press report had her sitting on his lap and French-kissing him. In fact, two sources say that ultimately D rebuffed her advances at another gathering not long after. At that event, the sources say, Madonna walked over and told a woman sitting next to D, “I think you’re in my seat.” The woman got up. Madonna sat down and told him, “I’d like to know what you’re thinking.” To which D replied, “I’m thinking you’re rude.”