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R. Kelly is ready to “tell it like it is” thanks to a recently signed memoir deal with SmileyBooks.

In a statement issued Wednesday, Kelly and PBS and former BET personality Tavis Smiley shed light on the forthcoming book Kelly says stems from “being misunderstood.”

“I’m writing this book as Robert, not R. Kelly,” the singer says. “I’m tired of being misunderstood. I will show you the tears, fears, and sweat. I will open my heart and reveal the good in my life as well as all the drama. I want to tell it like it is.”

In the memoir, Kelly, writing with celebrity author David Ritz, will detail the agony of losing his mother, whom he adored. He will reveal how the same creative soul that came up with such inspiring ballads as the iconic “I Believe I Can Fly” and “You Are Not Alone,” which became a No. 1 hit for Michael Jackson, could also generate such sexy R&B mega-hits as “Bump N’ Grind,” “Ignition,” and “When a Woman’s Fed Up.” And he will discuss the six-year legal ordeal that nearly ruined his life, but finally ended in vindication when he was found innocent of child pornography charges in 2008.

“We are thrilled to be the conduit through which R. Kelly will tell his own story,” said Tavis Smiley, founder and publisher of SmileyBooks. “He has earned the right to tell his story his own way.”

“You have the creative passion of R. Kelly, revealed in his groundbreaking ‘Trapped in the Closet’ series, coupled with writer David Ritz, who has collaborated with the musicians Marvin Gaye, Ray Charles, B.B. King, and Aretha Franklin,” says SmileyBooks President Cheryl Woodruff. “It’s a great pairing.”

Kelly’s book joins a SmileyBooks roster that includes the latest offering from New York Times bestselling author Cornel West, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud, A Memoir, as well as Jeff Johnson’s Everything I’m Not Made Me Everything I Am.

R. Kelly’s memoir, as yet untitled, is scheduled for release by SmileyBooks in early 2011.