I’m sure many of us (unless you’re living under a rock) have heard about the recent slew of news surrounding Kanye West. Just recently he was hospitalized shortly after going on a rant at his show in Sacramento, which led to canceling the remainder of his Saint Pablo tour. It does appear that around this time, Kanye does something outlandish and/or controversial that have people divided on whether he’s a genius or insane, so this recent rant doesn’t seem to be out of his character, but I actually want to delve further into this.
Kanye’s rant although initially was all over the place, honestly made a lot of sense to me. I came across an article that was the full transcript of his concert speech. Again, his speech is a bit erratic but Kanye starts off cussin out radio and how although there are good people who he’s connected with that work radio and are making a living, he hates the role that radio plays in the music political game. Their game of keeping the same songs in rotation and while pretending to play the songs that the people want, which obviously is not true. He also goes into a rant about who’s the greatest, whether him, Kid Cudi, or A$AP, but he stresses that they are all equal. He talks about Jay-Z and Beyonce and how he wants to sit down and talk to them but is also hurt by what they’ve done to him. He talks about wanting to make changes and how people in the industry are too caught up in unnecessary things and situations that they miss the big picture, and that he’s willing to speak the truth even if it costs him his success and career.
He goes on further to talk about how he didn’t vote but if he had, it would have been for Trump and that he’s on his Trump sh*t. This was the last straw for a lot of people, especially when Kanye is the same person who back in 2005 expressed adamantly, George Bush doesn’t care about black people. I do believe his mentioning of Trump pertains to him saying what he wants to say with no filter and Kanye can relate to this on various levels. Unfortunately, the problem is that he seems to contradict himself quite often, first making that statement during a Hurricane Katrina benefit show but then telling black people that slavery is a thing of the past and we should get over it. But we should also remember that Kanye believed that he was the next Nelson Mandela.
It’s clear that Kanye is frustrated with the music industry and uses whatever means necessary to get his message across to the people, hence his controversial methods. At the same time though, he makes valid points because it is very clear that the music industry is just one political game, you gotta make the right moves or play the right cards in order to succeed and if you don’t, you can easily be blacklisted. I think the issue is that people are simply tired of Kanye’s behavior and overlook the content of what he’s trying to get across.
At one point, I was bashing Kanye West like the next person, missing the old College Dropout Kanye who had humility and was thankful for life after surviving a horrible car crash. I missed the Kanye who appreciated his life despite having his mouth wired shut and had a tenacity that blew all other artist out the water. But I can’t do that because we all change, whether externally or internally. While he always walked on the edge of controversy, it’s been clear that during the course of his career he’s changed and it was inevitable. I can’t deny his music ingenuity and how he’s changed the game in so many ways. He deserves honorable mentions when you sit down with your friends and name the top 5 GOAT rappers or discuss how 808s and Heartbreak was his best work (my personal opinion, you can dispute me on it in another post lol).
I say this all to say that in watching Kanye’s career, while we can all sit and bash him or praise him, I realize there’s one thing that he needs, or rather something we all need…..
I read a post that was a simple reminder that it was on Nov. 10th, 2007 that Kanye’s mom died and how even till this day he blames himself for her death. The holidays in general are stressful, hectic and emotional so even the idea of not being able to spend the holidays with a loved one is a burden that no one wants to carry. I’m not saying that it’s excusable but in my opinion, I don’t believe Kanye has ever healed from that and honestly I don’t think you ever can. If he’s still blaming himself, I don’t imagine that the holiday seasons make things any better for him. My heart is saddened for Kanye West, although he is abundantly blessed in so many ways, like all of us, he still has demons to battle and hurt and pains to deal with. As a Christian, despite how outlandish he can be or the temper tantrums that he throws, it’s my responsibility to not only empathize with him but to pray for him. The music industry can change you by itself but when you add the guilt of losing a loved one and being sick of the music political game (which was the basis of his rant), it’s very possible for any of us to be Kanye.
I do intend to write a post about the music political game soon because it is very real and I think Kanye West just wanted to express how tired he is of it all and just wants the people to Let Ye be Ye.
What are your thoughts on Kanye’s rant? Should we dismiss it? Should we dismiss him? Let me know.