Chrisette Michele held hands with her band members during a final prayer, posed for a pre-show Instagram photo and stepped out into what remains of a career battered by a five-minute-18-second association with Donald Trump.
The Keswick theater in this suburb of Philadelphia sits in a region that is the mecca of the neo-soul music that earned Michele a dozen years of fame, a record deal at 23 and a career-validating Grammy. The last time she sang at the Keswick, her manager and husband, Doug Ellison, reminisced, nearly all 1,500 seats were filled.
But a few days after Christmas, the die-hard fans clotted near the stage to hear Michele sing were surrounded by a phalanx of empty seats.
It has been two years since Michele made what many predicted would be a career-ending decision — singing at one of President Trump’s inaugural balls. She accepted the gig against the advice of her fans, former collaborators and even her husband. She believed the performance would be an opportunity to “be a bridge” in a fractured nation.
Instead, it sent her life into a tail spin.
The 36-year-old lost an album distribution deal and radio stations stopped playing her songs. She was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and endured a miscarriage that she publicly attributed to stress from death threats and a hydrant of criticism. The singer who wrote “Strong Black Woman” wondered if she should just stop singing forever.
Now, Michele is back on stage with a new perspective. Amid the fallout, she told her critics that she is “no political genius,” but she now recognizes that’s irrelevant. In the age of social media and partisan politics, it’s impossible to separate the artist from the person. Her music, she acknowledges, can’t exist in a cultural vacuum.
“While I felt like people took so much away from me in those two years, I’m more grateful for finally having time to look at the last 12” years, since she released her first album, Michele said. “And I think that is the bright side. … I want people to know that it’s okay to expect more from me.”
This is what liberals do they destroy someone who doesn’t agree with them!
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Alex D is a conservative journalist, who covers all issues of importance for conservatives. He writes for Conservative US, Red State Nation, Defiant America, Right Journalism, and Supreme Insider. He brings attention and insight from what happens in the White House to the streets of American towns, because it all has an impact on our future, and the country left for our children. Exposing the truth is his ultimate goal, mixed with wit where it’s appropriate, and feels that journalism shouldn’t be censored. Join him & let’s spread the good word!