Kelly Rowland's solo career has never been able to escape that of Beyoncé.
Since her 2002 solo debut, Rowland has stood in the shadow of her Destiny's Child sister. It's almost impossible to find an interview with the singer without a mention of her more successful pal.
For her part, Rowland has always taken the constant comparisons and never-ending questions about a Destiny Child's reunion or Bey's success like any best friend would -- with a smile and a soundbite. Now, she's finally opening up about how it's affected her in a stunningly candid new single, "Dirty Laundry," taken from her upcoming fourth album, "Talk a Good Game."
Produced by The-Dream, Rowland's intensely personal single has the singer facing her resentment over her post-Destiny's Child career -- and revealing that as she stood in the shadows, she was also being physically abused.
"When my sister was onstage / killing it like a … / I was enraged / feeling it like a ….," she sings. "Went our separate ways but I was happy that she was killing it / Bittersweet, she was up and I was down / No lie, I feel good for her but what do I do now?"
Led by piano, the R&B jam spools into a dark confessional with Rowland singing about an ex who was "putting his hands on me" and cautioning to listeners that "y'all don't know the half of this industry.
"Hitting the window like it was me / And still it shattered / He pulled me out and said, 'Don't nobody love you but me / Not your mama / Not your daddy / and especially not Bey.' "
"Dirty Laundry" continues to show Rowland channeling the confidence she found with her last album, 2011's "Here I Am." After beefing up her profile with dance tracks such as "When Love Takes Over" and "Commander," Rowland slid into more sensual, grittier R&B terrain on the album with steamy cuts such as "Motivation."
As she's shown on recent singles, Rowland is continuing her quest to step out of the shadows. Hopefully, now that she's cleaned out her closets, more people will be ready to listen and accept Rowland -- on her own.
We'd post "Dirty Laundry," but all the lyrics aren't safe for work. Check out the track here.
"Talk a Good Game" is scheduled to hit stores June 18.