After a short lived reunion, Danity Kane announced yesterday they were splitting once again. We all remember the first heartbreaking split in 2009 after Diddy fired Aubrey O'Day, then shorty after, Wanita "D.Woods" Woodgett. According to O'Day, the group decided to split just 12 months after they announced their reunion due to an altercation that transpired in which Aubrey was punched in the back of the head by one of the other members. Aubrey expressed she could not excuse physical aggression in a letter to her fans. Shannon Bex and O'Day both expressed their sadness of the group's disband; however, there are always two sides to a story. According to Dawn Richards, the alleged attacker, Bex and O'Day were conducting 'Danity Kane' business without her. They were hosting business meetings and recording tracks behind Richards' back. I do not condone violence but what would you do in that situation and knowing their history?
The fight allegedly emerged during a group business meeting (some sources say a studio session) after Richards learned of the actions taking place without her knowledge. She punched O'Day in the back of the head while O'Day was speaking with an associate. O'day expressed publicly that Richards was not provoked or threatened before the incident occurred. O'Day filed a battery report against Richards. Dawn, if the rumors are true, then I am all for standing up for yourself but you should have known better than to lay hands in a White man's world. As for Aubrey, handle your business. If you and Bex were conducting business behind Dawn's back, own up to that mess and leave the police out of it.
After reviewing the statements released by O'Day and Bex, it looks as if both women are siding with one another. It seems they both have frustrations with Dawn that they could no longer keep silent. I think Aubrey and Shannon exposed too much of their private matters. Some things should remain private and the fans would have still understood. To view the letters, scroll to the bottom.
I am sad to hear that they will no longer be together as they were very close to finishing their comeback album. I was really looking forward to the spice these girls could have and would have brought to an industry full of copycats and imitators. This was one of the best girl groups of all time, in my opinion of course, and each member was and is equally talented. Hopefully they can work things out amongst themselves as they once considered each other "family." But in business, family means nothing.
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Dear DK Fans,
(Note from Aubrey)
I reach out to you with all of the honesty and sincerity in my heart. Without a doubt, you have always been my key source of inspiration. Everything I do in this industry is motivated by your commitment and passion. As you may know, there has been much speculation on the state of Danity Kane after a recent incident. In order to clear up any confusion, Shannon and I write to you today with nothing but pure intentions. Over the course of the past few days, we have heard countless recommendations on how we can “spin” this story or “make it go away,” as seems to be typical in our industry. We have never been — nor will we ever be — those types of women. This decision to stand by our principles may affect our future. Our pocketbooks. Our careers. And the list goes on and on. But, there is one thing it won’t affect —namely, your trust and faith in us. We owe you — our loving fans — the unfiltered truth.
During a recent group meeting, a business conversation took a turn for the worst when my group member punched me in the back of my head while I was speaking to another associate. To be clear, she was not physically engaged or threatened prior to her attack on me. This is the same information I provided to the police, and witnesses also corroborated this account of the incident. I cannot condone or excuse any form of physical violence, particularly at the hands of someone I considered family. Disagreements happen. But a war of words and ideas should never end in physical aggression.
It breaks my heart that this violence is followed by no sign of remorse. For the past year, I watched small lies turn into bigger lies. Those bigger lies turned into verbal abuse. Now the verbal abuse has deteriorated into a physical assault. I put what I knew was right second to what I knew I could handle for the sake of the big-picture success this incredibly talented group of women could have achieved together. It was my goal to prove that with enough understanding the issues behind the scenes could be resolved, and we could continue to create content for one of the most inspiring fan bases I have ever witnessed. I realize now that in order to achieve that reality all three girls would have to want that. And, unfortunately, only two of us put our solo ambitions and lives to a halt and consistently put the team first.
An ethical and moral line has been crossed. As someone who experienced abuse in the past, I promised to never grow up putting my hands on people or ever condoning such behavior in others. It is a promise near and dear to my heart. If you have experienced it before, you already know it is not something one should compromise. Over the past year of constant engagement, I tried tirelessly to sympathize with behavior I could not understand. But, I watched her behavior get darker and darker. And, I fear it will only get worse. This most recent occurrence is not just incredibly embarrassing for the members of Danity Kane. More importantly, it spits on the hard work of all those who have supported us along this journey. Sadness does not even remotely begin to describe what I feel right now. Ultimately, as a woman who has spent her entire career standing up for the underdog and right over wrong, I can no longer pretend that she is willing to do what it takes to protect the power of the Danity Kane name.
(Note from Shannon)
My heart is heavy. It is all I can do to pull myself out of bed to face this task. But, I know it must be done. There are many people besides myself that this impacts. Bottom line, it is not fair! I am not asking that you validate it being so. I am writing because you— the fans and our loved ones — deserve an honest and transparent explanation. My desire is to genuinely apologize to everyone who has poured their time, heart and energy into us. So many lives have been affected by this chain of events.
In the first chapter of Danity Kane, I did my best to be the glue that held us together. Assuming the role of the “quiet one,” I tried to keep my opinions to myself and worked behind the scenes to balance our strong personalities for the good of the Danity Kane name. Unquestionably, there were amazing times and truly genuine moments. Please do not believe anything different. Those honest moments kept me motivated through the battles. That being said, people eventually made choices I could not control.
I entered into this journey again with sisters who understood a dynamic that nobody else could. I hoped we could honestly reflect on what we had been through and the mistakes that were made. After this last year of trying to make this next chapter a success, I am devastated to admit that my expectations were set too high. I now must walk away feeling used and manipulated in addition to the name Danity Kane. I know this raises numerous questions. But, for me to delve into a “he said, she said” narrative is a tactic best reserved for those who shamelessly hope to gain followers, irrespective of the truth and the consequences of one’s actions. I am a grown and confident woman, and I only need to share my perspective. This has been a year of tremendous sacrifice. I left my husband alone for months on end, and he has undoubtedly suffered the most for my dreams. Aubrey graciously opened her home to me throughout this process, since I had no other place to stay. For that I am truly grateful! Day in and day out the focus in her home has been how to make Danity Kane an undeniable force of good. We tried our best to assemble a team to help bring Danity Kane back from the depths of disappointment and into an era where we, as independent women, were taken seriously in this business. From your perspective, I am sure it seems like this should have been an easy fix and that we should just “get it together.” Rest assured, we have been “getting it together” for a long time. At some point, the stress fracture was bound to turn into a break. It is unfortunate but real.
As for the actions that have brought us to this broken ending, I cannot speak for anyone or explain their internal struggles that prompted this heartbreaking sequence of events. All I know is what I have seen. I did not witness a shouting match, a cat fight or a brawl. I witnessed a single direct punch. In reflecting on this situation, I recalled a journal entry I wrote back in April. Initially, I struggled with sharing something so transparent and personal with all of you. However, my desire to be honest with you trumps all other considerations. As you can tell, I have been avoiding saying names. However, this was my personal reaction to escalating events that led up to my overall frustrations with Dawn….months ago.