“Let’s clear this up,” Ashanti told Angie Martinez on her IRL podcast Wednesday. It was the first time the “Princess of R&B” has opened up about allegations that she was in a relationship with Murder Inc. Records exec Irv Gotti while he was separated to the mother of his three children.
“We dealt with each other, but was Irv my boyfriend? Was I his girlfriend? Never. Irv had several girlfriends, so I’m a little confused by the label and the description,” she said.
The mega producer and founder of Murder Inc. Records sent the internet on a tailspin after he revealed on a Drink Champs episode that he had a romantic relationship with the Happy singer.
“I’m separated from [my wife] Deb. I’m on my own. And Ashanti’s coming to the studio every day and our friendship and bond is naturally growing. She used to wear these Juicy sweats and her ass was looking fat,” Irv recounted on the podcast.
He continued:” Her ass was looking great. So, one day I was like, ‘Yo, I’ll take you home.’ She said, ‘Bet, cool.’ We are walking to her front door of her crib. She turns and says goodbye and I just kiss her and grab her ass and just mwah. It was like, what took you so long?”
The 42-year-old singer said she was baffled by Irv’s comments, labeling him a “narcissist” that made their working relationship “into something big, and it’s really not that.” She added that when she rejected him after he pursued her, he turned into “a completely different person. Irv has flat-out lied about a lot of things. It’s weird. It’s very weird when you know you’re lying and you just keep lying. That’s where it becomes a little scary and a little mental.”
In response to rumors that they slept together she said, I’m trying to figure out what made him even say that. Was I there? I’m confused. I don’t remember this at all.” She also acknowledged that he would constantly disparage her, claimed he was responsible for her success and “made her fuckable.”
She also recounted memories of when she began to date Nelly. “Irv was salty,” she recalled. “Irv would not let me come to the studio to record. Irv was telling everyone not to record with me … You know what he said to me? He said, ‘Nah, you want to be with Nelly? Go sign to Derrty Entertainment. We don’t want you.’ I definitely feel like manipulation played a heavy part into me and Irv’s situation,” she said.
But through all the drama, she still feels empathy for the music mogul. “I feel like Irv is just hurt, and he doesn’t know where to place his hurt, and he doesn’t know how to channel it as a man. It’s sad,” she said. “I genuinely, in my heart, believe that Irv wishes death on me. A million percent.”
In Gotta Move On (Queens Remix), a song in which she features with Diddy, Ashanti sang: “It’s giving obsessed / It’s giving you stressed / It’s giving you pressed / It’s giving this nigga missing the best. / But it’s been 20 years, nigga, please, say less / We can see all your tears while you beating on your chest.”