R. Kelly’s Former Lawyer Spills the Beans on ‘Ignition’

R. Kelly has dominated entertainment news in the last several months. While many publicists allege that there is no such thing as bad press, R. Kelly knows there is isuch a thing as bad press and he has been served up a heaping helping of it. The once famed R&B artist is facing a plethora of felony sexual abuse claims that could put him in jail for the rest of his life.

Edward Genson
Edward Genson (C), attorney (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

While the latest allegations were levied in recent years, R. Kelly’s sexual misconduct is no secret to the world. He was previously tried on sexual abuse charges more than a decade ago. Now, his former lawyer is speaking out about his time with R. Kelly and what he thinks of the Ignition (Remix) singer.

R. Kelly’s former lawyer claims to have rewritten Ignition

Edward Genson has always been a character. The razor-tongued legal wizkid has had an illustrious career in the Chicago legal circuit. Once known for his somewhat aggressive approach to defending his clients, some of whom were clearly guilty, Genson is now leading a much more relaxed lifestyle, but that doesn’t mean he’s ready to just walk away from the spotlight.

Genson told the Chicago Sun-Times that R. Kelly was guilty as hell during his first trial, but he doesn’t know if he is guilty now. Genson told the paper that he helped R. Kelly rewrite Ignition, not to be confused with Ignition (remix). Genson went on to explain that the song was originally about a driving instructor who has a teenager in the vehicle with him.

Appalled by the lyrics and surprised that R. Kelly would be so blatant about his preference for young girls, he advised the R&B artist to rewrite it. The original song, according to Genson, never made it to the airwaves. Genson alleges he told Kelly that the original lyrics would be all that was needed to prove his attraction to underage women.

Does Edward Genson think R. Kelly is guilty?

In his lengthy interview with the Chicago-based paper, Genson stopped short of suggesting R. Kelly is guilty of his latest alleged crimes but did note that helping a client win such a high-profile case can be a double-edged sword. He went on to call R. Kelly “not very bright”, and he believes that winning the case in Florida could have potentially emboldened him.

R. Kelly with his lawyer
R. Kelly (R) and his attorney Steve Greenberg l(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Genson refuses to sugarcoat much about R. Kelly. He was honest with the paper when he said it was apparent that the rapper, now 52, had an attraction to underage girls. Genson goes so far as to say he suggested R. Kelly utilize libido-reducing medications to keep his fascination in check. No one from Kelly’s camp has responded to the allegations.

Does Genson have a reason to lie?

Genson, for all that he’s done in his legal career, is not a man who is going to start lying now. According to Slate, Genson, 77, is currently suffering from terminal cancer. The once animated legal shark also suffers from a neuromuscular disease that forced him to use a cane and mobility scooter during R. Kelly’s 2008 trial.

Known throughout Chicago as the man to see if you were in serious legal trouble, Genson has defended some of the city’s absolute worst in his illustrious career. He served as the lead attorney for Rod Blagojevich during his impeachment hearings. He also served as a lead attorney for Richard Gilman, a former CEO who found himself in hot water for theft, according to DWM Magazine. With 54 years as a practicing lawyer, Genson has defended everyone from mafia henchmen, to political figures, to celebrities and entertainers.

Genson has always been a straight shooter, if not a bit dramatic in his appraisal of his clients, fellow lawyers, and even judges. His accusations about R. Kelly don’t appear to be particularly outrageous, considering all that the public has learned about R. Kelly and his proclivities in recent weeks.