Following his breathtakingly heroic intervention at the final culturally relevant MTV Video Music Awards in 2009, West was grappling with a public image crisis, namely that his public image was one of noxious, weaponized ego.
And he understands how use his self-regard to conjure up a press shitstorm.
As his own hype man, West’s self-promotion reaches florid expressions of bombast that—problematic as it has been on occasion (and it really has been lately)—rivals the ecstatic feeling of his music.
“Diamonds From Sierra Leone” debuted on New York’s Hot 97 on April 20, 2005, and was followed two months later by a video directed by Hype Williams.
The second single, “Gold Digger,” a massive earworm that gave white kids in freshman English permission to contort themselves around bouncy racial epithets, arrived on July 5, and became West’s first Billboard Hot 100 number one, as well as the fastest selling digital single of all time in the early stages of i Tunes, a defunct technology fueled by gift cards from your aunt.), but West’s higher education framing device felt different, ferried by the mascot Dropout Bear, a dejected looking teddy bear that dressed like he owned a copy of the Japanese American collegiate bible “Take Ivy” and spent his free time on menswear message boards.
"He does have different sides to him and this is a side no one has seen before."She continued, It’s a lot.
Kim always says, ‘I can’t control what somebody else does,’ and I feel the same way. You all know if you have kids and they might have a totally different opinion about something or a different view about something.
There, in opulent exile, West began production on his new album.
By February of 2010, information about the album, which bounced around corners of the internet as , was reaching the mainland in drips and various degrees of veracity (this was also a time West was bringing up Big Sean, the Chipotle of hip hop, who Tweeted a lot of nonsense).
So while a new Kanye West album—, delivered on Thursday night via a livestream (and a listening party in Wyoming)—occasions in the media many deeply considered and surgical taxonomies of those records that preceded it, the public behavior that has accompanied each should also not go unexamined.