There are celebs we love, there are celebs we hate and then, there are celebs that we love to hate. Kanye West falls perfectly into the third category for the mainstream, news-reading, pseudo-intellectual crowd which loves to follow the bandwagon and hate people without knowing “WHY?”.
Although I’m a Kanye fan, I’m gonna try and keep this as unbiased as possible and not make it sound like a rant.
Ever since the 2009 VMA Awards and the infamous Taylor Swift/Beyonce incident, Kanye has accumulated a drastically long line of haters. Agreed, his actions were uncalled for but even after that, he issued an apology. Water under the bridge.
But ever since then, people have rather looked for opportunities to jab at him. Yes, he’s outspoken and exercises his right to speech like no other but at least he’s not a drunk lunatic who breaks laws and gets into fights under his celeb status (What’s up, Bieber?) and needless to say, he has pioneered a generation of hip hop with his phenomenally crafted music where his attributes of narcissism, braggadocio, with a little dash of honesty and a feeling of new-found responsibility, fame and fatherhood has been expressed with the enthusiasm of a man who’s no short of being a poet through his sound.
So, instead of hating him blindly for being honest and confident, analyze what he talks about or makes music about. Pick any of his albums from Late Registration to The Life of Pablo, he has consistently maintained a stunning musical range and given us all-time classic albums like My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy with themes addressing fame, downsides of stardom, personal losses, racism, hate crimes, media frenzy and white supremacy.
Kanye has been a tremendous music producer and is one of the few geniuses who makes average lyrics of an artist look amazing by providing good music instead of being the quintessential rapper who talks about his shoes, cars and marijuana.
Kanye’s outspoken nature and ridiculously high self-confidence, which is almost necessary to be a hip-hop mogul have often been called his cockiness/recklessness and people judge his music or hate him on that basis alone instead of actually listening to his work and worse, for marrying one of the Kardashian sisters.
Yes, he named his daughter North West but how’s that our business, again? He’s open about his life choices and has shown his love for his daughter on multiple occasions and that’s more than enough to prove that he’s unfazed by the unnecessary media attention on his personal life.
His concerts have garnered rave reviews and it wasn’t until recently that two petitions were signed from him to not perform at 2 given venues but Kanye, fearless as ever, went and performed and even his hardcore celeb critics were in awe of his talent and stage persona.
Kanye’s music videos have been scrutinized (Yes. “Famous”. But that’s a whole different story.) and debated upon but at the end of the day, for an artist with 21 Grammy Awards and immense critical acclaim, is his good-boy attitude and mannerisms really that important when he chooses to be his real self ; A self-made man who has been through a near-death experience, made a name for himself with unparalleled determination, flamboyance and years of hard work? For all I know, he has earned this right to be fearless. Forgot about the time when he preached his wisdom via his lyrics that said, “Name one genius that ain’t crazy”?
Kanye was criticized for naming his album Yeezus and being explicit with the cover art for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy but the reviews silenced all the haters. Time and again, he has let his work do the talking and it reeks of sheer skill. Narcissism is a part of him and that’s never going away. The sooner you accept that, you may just be able to look past the paparazzi view and see the real man under the spotlight.
And even if you don’t, “Yeezy” doesn’t care. He’s a born superstar and has said it on his song “New Slaves” himself :
“You see there’s leaders and there’s followers, but I’d rather be a dick than a swallower.”
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Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.