Chaka Khan shared her unfiltered opinion on the vocal talents of Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige and others during an interview on The Originals podcast for Los Angeles Magazine. The 69-year-old singer revealed her thoughts in reaction to Rolling Stone’s “200 Best Singers Of All Time” list published in January 2023.
Learning of the list from the podcast host Andrew Goldman who congratulated her on being included, the “I’m Every Woman” performer revealed she was unaware the ranking existed. On the list, she ranks No. 29, two ahead of Luther Vandross at No. 31 and just behind Mahalia Jackson at No. 28.
“I didn’t even know what the hell you were talking about, so obviously this don’t mean a great deal to me,” she remarked. “These people don’t quantify or validate me in any way.”
In all of her self-proclaimed nonchalantness however, the Queen of Funk had a lot to say about the placement of other vocalists on the list.
“That must be payola or some sh*t like that,” Khan said of Mariah Carey’s No. 5 placement.
“These are blind bi**hes!” explained the Chicago native. “They are blind as a motherfu**ing bat! They need hearing aids…These must be the children of Helen Keller!” she declared of the publications editors after learning she was placed behind Mary J. Blige, who came in at No. 25.
The two women have had their issues in the past, with Khan believing the Queen Of Hip-Hop Soul “fu**ed up” the Rufus & Chaka Khan song “Sweet Thing”, which she covered on her debut album released in 1992.
“I told her her vocals were flat,” Khan said of Blige’s version of the R&B jam.
Still, the two artists have since collaborated musically. Chaka Khan even performed at the My Life singer’s inaugural Strength of a Woman Festival in 2022.
Blige and Carey were not the only performers who caught harsh criticism from the Funk music singer.
“Okay, I quit,” shared Khan after learning UK R&B singer Adele was ranked ahead of her at No. 22.
Her commentary did have kind words for one placement. Aretha Franklin stands strong in the top spot at No. 1, and in the words of Chaka Khan, “As she f**king should be.”