Chaka Khan Criticizes Singers Who Use Auto-tune & Ye Again

LEGENDS & ICONS OF HIP HOP - Post By Kevin Douglas

legends icons

Chaka Khan is an iconic figure in the history of soul singers and has been sampled by the likes of Kanye West for his hit song “Through The Wire.”

She has complained in the past about her “Through The Fire” song sampling her vocals to not sound natural like a chipmunk. In an interview with Marissa Mitchell, the Rock ‘N Roll nominee stated, “I’ve not heard from him, and I’m not looking to hear from him. That’s what he did with his music,” said Khan of the track, which includes a pitched and sped-up version of her song. “I was upset about sounding like a chipmunk, ’cause he didn’t put that when he asked [if he could] sample my song.”

“He didn’t mention he was going to speed it up three times its normal speed,” she continued, noting the experience changed her perspective on allowing artists to use her music. “Had he, I would’ve had something to say. But since I didn’t think of that, believe me, I think of it now. [When someone asks to sample my music] I ask, ‘How are we gonna do this?'”

“I thought about it. I said, ‘Well, he can’t mess it up because I will be singing it after all. It’s my voice,'” she continued. “But he found a way. By golly, he found a way to freak that up… I hate [the chipmunk voice].”

Page Six recently interviewed Chaka Khan and she once again took aim at the use of auto-tune. The music legend congratulated some artists of today, but gave the advice to those using auto-tune to find another line of work.

“There is some great stuff out there and there are some great artists,” Khan told Page Six while at the Angel Ball. “There’s some very fine young artists out there doing great, great work that I am impressed with.”

“I feel very sad. It saddens me deeply that so much,” she told Page Six. “Insecurity is present in these girls. They really need to know that they are the gold and that they really are precious.”

Chaka Khan did do a slowed down version of “Through The Wire” on the 2004 VMA awards with Kanye himself. During the time she did not reveal her true thoughts about the sample.


Over the years many people have broke down the sampling work of Kanye West and how he made “chipmunk soul” sampling popular. “Through The Wire” is described as the artist own form of medicine for the pain he was going through during that time period.

Chaka Khan in a more recent interview a few weeks, still expressed her displeasure of how her vocals were used. Check it out below as some people believe she should just let it go now.