Cee Lo Green recently released the first single off his upcoming fifth studio album, ‘Heart Blanche’, and it’s getting some mixed reviews. The singer and former judge on “The Voice” just dropped a new track called “Robin Williams”, largely about the late comedian who died from suicide last summer at the age of 63.
There are some media outlets and critics who are applauding the song, which mentions the likes of Chris Farley and Bernie Mac alongside Williams, for being a heartfelt tribute to recently departed icons. In a statement about the track, Green said: “‘Robin Williams’ is a homage to our humanity, centered [on] the strength it takes to smile in the face of adversity.”
The song, however, is also rubbing some people the wrong way. Critics are claiming that Green is making a profit off of tradegy, all while likening the “adversity” Williams faced while trying to cope with depression to Green’s own “adversity” in putting up with the backlash following his drink-spiking felony and comments about rape last year. Having to face some “adversity” after making remarks like “People who have really been raped REMEMBER!!!” isn’t quite the same as suffering from a mental illness.
Not only does Green use the death of Williams to get a reaction, he also name-drops the late John Belushi, Richard Pryor, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. A scathing post on Streogum summarizes: “The attention-grabbing focus on Williams is a disgusting way to profit off tragedy, but what’s even worse, he’s trying to flip his “grief” over Williams into a redemption narrative for himself.”
Listen to the controversial song below: