In a distressing Instagram Live stream, CupcakKe has announced she’s retiring, canceling her tour dates, and pulling all of her music offline.
A recording of the Sunday night livestream has been shared online, and it’s an agonizing watch. It finds CupcakKe in her Orlando hotel room, wrapped in a blanket and rocking on the bed as she struggles through explaining why she’s decided to leave music. At the center of everything seems to be that the 22-year-old Chicago artist has grown to feel she’s “corrupting the youth” with her lyrics. Indeed, she’s fostered a reputation for raunchy rap with tracks like her breakout “Deepthroat”, “Squidward Nose”, and her X-rated “Old Town Road” remix. When she started seeing videos of kids singing and dancing to her songs and witnessed the crowds at her all-ages “10K Tour”, however, she evidently began questioning her work.
“I want to go to heaven after this,” she said in the video. “And I don’t want to go as… I don’t want to go to hell. Seeing all-age kids at my show and seeing them sing along to ‘hump me’ and ‘fuck me’ and all this shit, it has torn me apart. I’m just not happy. I don’t wanna be around no one right now.”
She went on the say her pattern of dropping a hyper-sexualized track followed by one “that really shows my talent” was a strategy that has apparently backfired. “I did it to bring awareness to my actual talent… But it seems like no matter what I do, the sexual music overpowers the quote-unquote non-sexual music.” A recent example of this strategy involves the steamy “Whoregasm” from August and the harder “Grilling N*ggas”, which dropped last Friday.
CupcakKe admitted to employing a similar tactic in the lead up to her quitting music. She spent the days prior to her stream causing a stir on Twitter, labeling Camila Cabello “racist,” calling her boyfriend Shawn Mendes “the fine gay guy,” and picking a fight with K-pop fans by saying the singer Chungha “can’t dance.” Now, CupcakKe has claimed all those tweets were meant to drum up attention before declaring her retirement.
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Beyond how she feels her music has affected young listeners, she also thinks the industry will never properly accept her because of “my size, my shape, me having weight on me.” “I realize no matter what I put out, I will never be good enough for society,” she stated, adding she’s tried to switch up her styles and topic focuses. “No matter what, I’ll still be called untalented because, ‘That’s the girl that made ‘Deepthroat’. That’s the girl who did ‘hump me, fuck me.” I don’t wanna waste no body else’s time, and I don’t wanna waste my time.”
In another stunning moment, CupcakKe revealed she has a gambling addiction that cost her $700,000 at a casino last year. “I learned during the time that I lost all the money, that I’m very much at peace without it,” she said. “When I had the money, all I gained was people that used me and they didn’t care for me really. When I lost the $700,000, I learned who my friends were and who aren’t.”
Since posting the video (which was shot by an unseen and unheard second individual), CupcakKe has taken down all her social media profiles. Although she has promised to pull all her music as well, her releases are currently still available on major streaming services and YouTube. Her “10K Tour”, which launched earlier this month and has seen her giving away $10,000 to a fan every night, is also said to be canceled. She’s scheduled to perform at Atlanta’s The Masquerade tonight; Consequence of Sound reached out to the venue for clarification and was told that, as of this writing, the show is still set to take place as planned, but to keep an eye on their social media for any updates.
Near the end of the video, CupcakKe asserted this was not a publicity stunt. “This is not a ‘I’m done now’ situation and then two weeks later she’s dropping a song, or a month later, or three months later,” she said. “I am completely done with music. I want to be normal again. I am just done.”
Fighting back tears, she concluded,
“I thank you everyone who has supported me, because before this I was homeless, me, my mom, and my family. This journey has really changed my family’s life and my life. So I really do appreciate it, but I just don’t want to corrupt nobody else. I didn’t know I was corrupting people until I saw the video, and I got on stage and I see these all-age kids screaming out to my lyrics. And it’s wrong. Even if it’s okay to ya’ll, it’s not okay with me. Some people will say change the content, and even if I change the content, like I said, I know for a fact that me being my size, no one will support me. So this is the end of CupcakKe. I just wanna say thank you and thank you for supporting me. I really appreciate it. And that’s it.”
Watch the full video below. We’ve reached out to CupcakKe’s representatives for more information.