Brian McKnight Jr. has made it clear that he’s not changing his name anytime soon — whether Brian McKnight Sr. likes it or not.
In an Instagram Story posted on Wednesday (June 7), the aspiring R&B singer said that he will be keeping his name, despite his father’s recent request for him to not do so.
“I appreciate my lineage, and I appreciate where my name comes from,” he said in the story. “And it’s also my son’s name. So, I just feel like, in my heart, that I would be giving off an incredibly wrong message, and set the wrong example, if I changed my name just because my father did.”
Take a listen to it below.
Last month, the “Love Is” singer faced claims of “abandonment” from the children from his first marriage — and he took to Instagram to emphatically deny the claims, while making clear that the estrangement was “mutual.”
“To whom it may concern: NO ABANDONMENT, NO MADE UP STORY, NO FALSE STATEMENTS, NO DEFAMATION,” he wrote in the caption.
“I never abandoned anyone,” he said in the video. “Our estrangement was mutual. But those posts made any roads towards reconciliation and acknowledging them a dead issue. And I changed my will the next day.
“I’ve spent the last 30-plus years building a recognized, respectable name. And ironically, there are still people out there who are trying to smear my name while still carrying it, hoping to use it for their own benefit.”
He continued: “I make absolutely no apologies for naming my infant son Brian. I want him and the world to know that he is the one who is my true legacy. So I’ll be over here continuing to love and protect my wife, and our children, as we continue to love our life.”
The video came shortly after the “One Last Cry” singer settled a lawsuit from his estranged daughter over claims he “maliciously defamed” her on social media by lying about her having an affair with her own cousin.
According to documents obtained by Radar Online, the singer’s daughter Briana filed the lawsuit against her father in 2020, accusing him of being motivated by “animosity” when he told his followers that “she had some years earlier, and while a minor, engaged in sexual relations with an older cousin.”
In her suit, Briana claimed the issue started in 2019 when she decided to share “aspects of her perceptions of growing up with an unnamed absent father on her personal Instagram page.”
Though she allegedly didn’t even give a clue as to who he was, McKnight responded by “publicly stating that Briana was a promiscuous and incestuous minor, and thereby (he hoped) undermining Briana’s credibility regarding a post that did not even identify him.”
His post reportedly said: “And unfortunately along the way, a couple of years ago I caught wind that there was an older cousin who was above 18 who was quite possibly having sex with her.” He also reportedly alleged that Briana’s mother, who he’d had an affair with while he was married to someone else, “only had a child with” him “for money in the first place.”
Briana denied any such activity in her lawsuit, which stated: “Briana had never engaged in any sexual contact of any kind with any relative of any age while a minor or otherwise.” She also added that she doesn’t believe anyone ever even told McKnight anything of the sort and that he was simply making it up.
In his response, McKnight denied all allegations of wrongdoing, arguing that his statements were “substantially true” and he wasn’t speaking of malice. He demanded the entire case be thrown out, but it was instead set to go to trial. However, documents show that both parties agreed to dismiss the lawsuit in February.