Barry Manilow doesn’t know if Nicki Minaj can bounce back from the controversy surrounding her new video.
The 31-year-old star hit headlines on Tuesday when the video for her new track Only was released, with many alleging she had used Nazi-inspired imagery.
And now Copacabana singer Billy has come forward to talk about the video, admitting he can’t understand the situation.
“I can’t believe what’s she’s saying,” Barry said during an interview on Access Hollywood. “I can’t believe what I’m hearing.
“How is this happening? I mean, what about all the people all around her stopping her from releasing this. This is bad for her career, man… Anything for publicity? Anything?!”
The video features Nicki’s initials in flags of red and white, with the symbol looking incredibly similar to that of the Nazis.
Following the criticism for the video, Nicki took to Twitter to insist she hadn’t meant any offense.
“Both the producer and person in charge of overseeing the lyric video (one of my best friends and videographer: A. Loucas), happen to be Jewish,” she wrote. “I didn’t come up with the concept, but I’m very sorry and take full responsibility if it has offended anyone. I’d never condone Nazism in my art.”
Since then, Jeffrey Osborne, who directed the video, has also come forward, insisting that the message of the video was entirely his own and not reflective of Nicki’s mindset.
“First, I’m not apologizing for my work, nor will I dodge the immediate question,” he told Myspace. “The flags, armbands, and gas mask (and perhaps my use of symmetry?) are all representative of Nazis.
“As far as an explanation, I think it’s actually important to remind younger generations of atrocities that occurred in the past as a way to prevent them from happening in the future. And the most effective way of connecting with people today is through social media and pop culture. So if my work is misinterpreted because it’s not a sappy tearjerker, sorry I’m not sorry. What else is trending?”
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