perform at the AVN Awards and you turned it down. Why?
BM: As a businessman, I have to listen to every offer that comes across my desk. So I wasn’t planning on singing this on the AVN, but let’s just be real, there are two kinds of people: people who watch porn and people who lie about watching porn. That’s all that there is. And there’s no site on earth that gets as much traffic as porn sites. I’ll give you a statistic. Last year, the porn business made $13 billion, which is more than all of the tech companies combined. So Google, Microsoft, all of ‘em combined…so what does that tell you? That people are out here doing what they need to do at home, which is perfectly fine with me. But that’s the thing, it’s 2012 and, really, all these people are uptight about p---- and squirt? Are you insane? Really? And if you go and look at their profile and it says on their profile, "worship leader" or "Jesus chaser," you’re not supposed to be listening to this anyway! Ok? That’s all I’m saying. Just don’t be a hypocrite.
EBONY: That said, what made you turn it down?
BM: Oh, because visually that wasn’t a good situation for me to be in. I’m not quite that liberal just yet. Even though I have been to the AVN Awards before, just not as a performer.
EBONY: There’s this renewed spotlight on you now because of the new song that you released, so what happens with you moving forward?
BM: I just created my foundation, the McKnight 360 Foundation, where I am trying my best to get music back into the schools and to give scholarships to those kids who really, really want to learn their craft. Number two, BrianMcKnight360.com, that’s where I’m releasing my music from now on. I realized that the currency of the future is your email address and if there are people out there who want this music they’re gonna get it from me directly. There’s no more middle man. I can’t leave the fate of my music up to someone who doesn’t really care about it, i.e., the record labels. No more. And I’m looking for the next Luther, the next Stevie, the next Marvin, because I’m gonna have a home for them and people are gonna know, I may not be able to find this on the radio, but I know that Brian is still dealing with quality artists and I can go find it there.
EBONY: Are you disappointed with where record labels have gone with regards to R&B music?
BM: All I can do is try to find the solution. The record labels have never been in it for the art. They never have. We’re in a day and age where you’re gonna have to be proactive about your own career, cause I’m not in the record business. I’m in the touring business.
EBONY: You’re actually touring doing some dates right now, right?
BM: I’m always doing dates. It’s the only way an artist is going to eat.
EBONY: So does that mean we’re gonna hear live performances of the new song?
BM: No, no, no, you’re never gonna hear that. Unless I come and do it in your bedroom, one-on-one. [Laughs] That’s not why I made it. It’s an adult song and, you know, maybe my next song will be about paying the mortgage. I don’t know. I can write about anything.
EBONY: You said you wrote this song because you were ailing at home and bored. How are you doing?
BM: I ruptured my Achilles about a month and a half ago, playing basketball and I’m almost walking now and I’m very close to being fully recovered. It hasn’t stopped me, I’ve done seven shows since I got hurt.
EBONY: This song got people talking and the conversation is still going …
BM: There is a fine line between genius and insanity.
EBONY: And where do you think this falls?
BM: I think I’m straddling the both ways, honestly. But nobody was talking about me two weeks ago.