Jussie Smollett may have been dropped from all charges surrounding the alleged staged hate crime he sent on himself but it doesn't mean a large number of people think the Empire actor is entirely innocent. It's for that reason why his brother Jojo has penned an open letter for BET detailing more about his brother and just why he believes he would never do such a horrible thing as lie about the attack.
"It has not yet been 90 days since my younger brother, Jussie Smollett, was assaulted on a cold winter night in Chicago. Within less than three months, his life has been turned upside down as my family and I have witnessed him endure unrelenting attacks to his character and reputation," Jojo began in his letter, titled What If Jussie Is Telling The Truth? "To define this experience as unjust would be an understatement."
Jojo discussed the allegations on how Jussie staged the attack becasue he wanted a pay raise. "I was shocked at how easily everyone accepted the ridiculous motive about Jussie’s career that was promulgated. Jussie had actually begun directing episodes of Empire, which brought additional compensation. He worked out a deal with Fox to own 100% of his music masters , released an album, which lead to a sold out world tour and he donated every cent of ticket sales to charity," Jojo explained.
"He even signed the group, June’s Diary, to his label. My brother was developing two films with one of the biggest producers in Hollywood, had the lead to a Broadway show on the table and owns the option rights to the authorized autobiography of his idol, Alvin Ailey."
Among the other examples of how his brother is holding up and suffering all the same time, Jojo ends his letter writing: "I am simply hoping there are some conscious-minded people out there who, instead of carelessly victim blaming and shaming, want to loudly ask the simple question: “What if Jussie is telling the truth?”
Read the full letter here.
Nile Rodgers & Other Songwriters Slam Spotify Over Royalty Payout Appeal
Spotify has plans to appeal a decision handed down by the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board, which details an increase in royalties from 10.5 percent to 15.1 percent over the next five years — and some top songwriters are (rightfully) pissed.
Many greats including Nile Rodgers, Ludwig Göransson, Frank Dukes, Greg Kurstin, Vinylz, and Bibi Bourelly sound off in an open letter addressed specifically to Spotify CEO Daniel Ek. They express outrage over the streaming platform’s decision to appeal.
Their letter reads:
“We’re hurt and disappointed. You created a songwriter relations team and ingratiated Spotify into our community. We know that you are not the only DSP appealing the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) rate determination. You are, however, the only provider that made us feel we were working to build a modern music industry together. Now, we can see the real reason for your songwriter outreach. You have used us and tried to divide us but we stand together.”
And, closes with an important demand:
“Do the right thing and drop your appeal of the Copyright Royalty Board rate determination.”
“Not So Secret Geniuses”
Read the full letter Billboard.