Chrisette Michele put a lot on the line to sing at Donald Trump’s inauguration. The Grammy-winning singer told Billboard that family members have “disowned” her over the performance, and she didn’t even get to meet Trump.
“Originally I was supposed to perform directly after his first speech, and I had done that with Barack Obama before, so I was used to that kind of experience,” she explained. “And the woman who organized the event came and told me, ‘Now you’re going to go first and he’s going to go after you.’ “
“I looked her in the eye and said, ‘My family has disowned me,’” recalled Michele. “If you decided to Google me, you’ll see that America is writing about me in their newspapers. I’m the black poster child for discord right now, and he’s not going to shake my hand?’ So no, I didn’t get to meet him.”
She went on to address Spike Lee’s decision to pull her music from his upcoming Netflix series.
“I was so saddened by Spike Lee’s comments because he’s somebody that I look up to in our community,” she continued. “Now that I’m working on my own show, I’m looking to him, so he’s the one I’m supposed to be able to come to and say, ‘Ok, Spike, you understand my city, where I’m from, my world, show me how to do this.'”
Despite the social media backlash, getting snubbed by the president, and being mistreated by her family, Michele revealed that she didn’t “think twice” about accepting the performance invite.