As controversy surrounds hip-hop pioneer Afrika Bambaataa regarding a series of molestation allegations, a fellow legend is sounding off. In a sit-down with N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN’s Drink Champs podcast, KRS-One defended the Zulu Nation founder against claims made by four men that Bambaataa committed sexual assault. Calling the claims “controversy,” KRS dismissed the situation as gossip.
“First of all, controversy is not truth,” KRS-One said. “What you want is truth right now. But truth is also not information. It’s not gossip. It’s not even conversation.”
Amid the spread of the story and three more men coming forward in addition to former music executive Ronald Savage, Afrika Bambaataa released a statement. "These allegations are baseless and are a cowardly attempt to tarnish my reputation and legacy in hip-hop at this time,” it read. “This negligent attack on my character will not stop me from continuing my battle and standing up against the violence in our communities, the violence in the nation and the violence worldwide."
KRS-One took the stance that Afrika Bambaataa’s contributions to hip-hop should not be tarnished by molestation allegations. He called the matter “personal,” and noted that he didn’t “give a f**k” personally.
“For me if you keep it hip-hop, nothing can be taken away from Afrika Bambaataa,” KRS-One said. “Nothing. Just keep hip-hop. But if you want to dig into dude’s personal life and accusations that’s being made and so on… Personally — me personally – I don’t give a f**k. Personally. Look, if somebody was harmed or whatever, y’all gotta deal with that s**t. Deal with it. That don’t stop hip-hop. That don’t stop what you did for hip-hop. It don’t take away none of it. History is history. But deal with that. That’s personal.”
Listen to KRS-One discuss Afrika Bambaataa below:
(Photo: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)