John Legend is clearing up reports suggesting he is distancing himself from his longtime collaborator Kanye West due to their differing political stances.
The All of Me hitmaker appeared to suggest he and Kanye were more colleagues than friends in the December (19) issue of Vanity Fair, in which he denounced the rap superstar’s staunch support of U.S. President Donald Trump.
“I’m not trying to disown Kanye because I still love him and love everything we’ve done together creatively,” he told the magazine. “But we were never the closest of friends.”
His remark quickly became a hot topic online, but John has since taken to Twitter to clarify his comments, highlighting a Complex.com post with the headline: “John Legend says he and Kanye West were ‘never the closest of friends.'”
In a series of messages, the singer, who is married to model and TV personality Chrissy Teigen, explained he was only referring to one aspect of their relationship.
“I get why people want to make this a thing. But I was explaining to the reporter how I’ve seen people I love reacting to the deaths of their mothers,” he wrote. “I was thinking specifically of my own mom, Chrissy’s mom and others.
“Then she asked me if I was referring to Kanye as well after Dr (Donda) West died. And I told her I wasn’t really in a position to say because while Kanye (and I) have a long friendship and have a (sic) made a lot of great music, we weren’t close on the level of confiding in each other about grief”.
John continued, “As I said then, I don’t want this to sound like I’m trying to disown him now that we’ve publicly and privately disagreed about politics, etc. It was just clarifying that I had no private knowledge that equipped me to speculate on his grieving process and how that related to mine.”
Kanye has yet to respond to the Vanity Fair article. He lost his mother Donda in 2007 after she suffered complications from a plastic surgery procedure.