R. Kelly has filed a new lawsuit against rapper, mogul and Def Jam President
Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, stemming from last year’s disastrous
“Best of Both Worlds Tour.”
Kelly filed the lawsuit
in Manhattan Supreme Court, claiming that the man who peppered sprayed him at
the Oct. 2004 Madison Square Garden tour stop was rewarded with a job at Def
The embattled R&B singer
claims the hiring of Tyran “Ty-Ty” Smith – who is currently
awaiting trial for assault over the incident – proves that Smith was “acting
within the scope and course of his employment by Jay-Z."
Handlers for Jay-Z
claim the entire lawsuit is a publicity stunt meant to divert attention away
from his upcoming felony trial involving an alleged sexual incident with a 14-year-old
A Chicago, Illinois Judge
recently ruled that Kelly must stand trial over the alleged violations.
of Both Worlds Tour” was a disaster from the beginning. The tour was supposed
to capitalize off of an album of the same name, which was shelved when an alleged
videotape of Kelly having sex with an underage girl surfaced and spread.
The album was retooled
and released as The Best of Both Worlds, Unfinished Business, but was
greeted with lukewarm sales, despite the superstar status of both artists, who
have sold over 60 million records combined.
“The first night [in
Chicago] was terrible,” Jay-Z said directly after the Madison Square Garden
fiasco. “I’m waiting in my white suit for two hours. The guy don’t
come downstairs…you don’t do that. I’m like, ‘I don’t
work for you, B.’ I gave him that leeway, because that’s his town.”
Kelly claimed that
several songs into his performance, unidentified men in the crowd flashed guns
in his direction, prompting him to storm off of the stage.
He said that when
he tried to return to finish his performance, Smith maced him and several associates,
prompting a trip to the hospital, where Kelly and crew were treated and released.
In November of
2004, Smith was arrested and formally charged with misdemeanor assault violations
over the incident.
Kelly was booted
from the remainder of the tour and filed a $90 million breach of contract lawsuit
against Jay-Z, who answered Kelly’s suit with his own.
Jay-Z’s suit alleges
Kelly would cry “hysterically" at times and even left a show in St.
Louis where he went to a local McDonald’s and “began to serve food to
patrons at the drive-thru."