After delays over sampling clearance issues, the rapper released his latest album ‘2000’ last Friday (July 22). The 14-tracker features previously released singles ‘Survivors Guilt’ and ‘Where I Belong’, as well as a collaborative cut with Brown, titled ‘Welcome Back’.
His choice to work with Brown on the song was initially questioned during a Reddit AMA last week, when one user wrote: “Why u put Chris brown on ur album dawg.” In response to the comment, Joey said it was “an honor” to have Brown on the album, adding: “I get it, you guys may not think he’s perfect or cool because of things he’s done in his past, but which one of you guys are perfect?”
Elaborating on the situation in a recent interview with TMZ, Joey said: “Like I said, I think Chris Brown is one of the best artists of this generation, of our times. Of all times, you know what I mean?”
“So, for me personally, it was an honor working with him. I’ve been a fan of him as long as I can remember,” he continued. “People make mistakes, and I’m not justifying anybody’s mistakes in any type of way, but after a while there’s a growing opportunity for everybody.”
In 2009, Brown assaulted his then-partner Rihanna in a highly publicised incident that took place on the eve of the Grammy Awards. Years later, in 2017, another ex-girlfriend, Karrueche Tran, alleged that Brown had assaulted her, and took out a restraining order against the singer over alleged death threats.
Another incident of alleged assault was reported last year by a woman who said Brown had physically assaulted her at his San Fernando Valley home. Due to insufficient evidence, he did not face any criminal charges for the alleged case.
Joey is not the only musician who has faced backlash for working with Brown. In 2019, Justin Bieber came under fire for referring to the singer’s past assault charge as “a mistake he made”. Lizzo also drew criticism last year for a video in which she referred to Brown as her “favourite person in the whole fucking world”.