Whitney Houston‘s family is torn over Kanye West‘s decision to purchase a photo of her drug-infested bathroom and use it as the cover for Pusha T‘s new album, Daytona.
In an interview with Angie Martinez, Pusha T revealed he had already chosen an album cover, but Kanye made the last minute decision to change it to the bathroom photo, which he paid $85,000 to use.
Whitney’s nephew, Gary Michael Houston, released a statement to “Good Morning America” defending Kanye and Pusha T’s right to use the photo to “convey a visual message to accompany their musicianship.”
Gary also noted he “loves” Pusha’s new album.
He went on to say people need to direct their anger at the unnamed family member who snapped the pic in 2006 and sold it to the National Enquirer.
Not to be divisive, but I’m of a different mindset when it comes to situations like this. People will automatically look to people like Pusha T and Kanye West and try to place blame or say they have ill or malicious intent in order to gain publicity. But I get it. I get the correlation (sans my aunt but the photo itself) and I actually love the album.
Bottom line — they are artists and in this day and age, if they can afford to pay someone for usage of that photograph in order to convey a visual message to accompany their musicianship … then so be it.
The bigger issue is deeper and one that most people (including folks who claim to be so heartbroken and traumatized by the usage of the photo) choose to conveniently ignore and bypass.
The person who violated the trust of my aunt by taking the photo and selling it to tabloids for their own personal and/or financial gain is more of a travesty to me. People should research that — because whoever exposed it are the people who violated her trust, mistreated her, and who should ultimately be held accountable for contributing to circumstances surrounding her demise.
Meanwhile…Whitney’s cousin, Damon Elliott, is completely disgusted by the use of the photo for Push T’s album cover.
Dionne Warwick‘s son spoke with People magazine revealing it was his daughter who contacted him about the use of the photo.
[She was] frantic. She sent me this picture from the album cover and I immediately got sick to my stomach because it took me right back to six years ago.
I was actually in shock because I’m in the music business. I’ve watched the train wreck happening, but I didn’t think he’d [Kanye] go this far in invading someone’s family privacy.
To do something for a publicity stunt to sell records, it’s absolutely disgusting. It hurt my family and my daughter. It’s petty. It’s tacky.
I just want him to tell me why he did it. What is the creative side of this? What’s the point? It shows no creativity.
What are your thoughts on the use of the photo?