Kanye West has been so present in the media lately, between promotional appearances and his regular mid-concert "visionary streams of consciousness" (as he calls them), that any interview warranting a mention must be pretty damn special. His showing earlier today on New York's Power 105 is one such interview. For over 40 minutes, the hosts (especially Wendy Williams' former sidekick, Charlamagne the God), pummeled Ye with questions, frequently pointing out his contradictions. These included:
- "To me it seems like you're such a walking contradiction because you'll denounce the corporations, but then you'll get on stage and say you need Nike and Adidas to back you. That makes no sense to me."
- "Why do you talk so much about money nowadays, man? I used to look at you as, like, a real revolutionary. You know real revolutionaries didn't need money to change the world?"
- "You do realize that [sneakers] are not why we love you? We love you 'cause of the music, bruh."
- "If you're a genius, why do you feel the need to tell everybody? Why you just don't show and prove with actions and deeds, and not words and lip-service?"
- "I'm from Columbia, South Carolina, where the Confederate flag still flies over the state house. I seen people protesting to take that flag down for years. It's just like the word nigga: you can't make that into a positive." (Re: Kanye's Yeezus tour merch.)
Ah, catharsis. This crew is way bolder than so many others who wilt in the face of Kanye, like Jimmy Kimmel who, like a coward, let Kanye control his show for eight almost uninterrupted minutes when he visited last month.
For his part this time around, Kanye was up for the challenge (he predicted the notoriously brutal hosts wouldn't be kind to him). And while he didn't always make sense of his own nonsense, he sometimes came close to it and never blamed it on "containing multitudes." He even confessed to being, gasp, fallible.
On the other side of that, he called himself "the 2Pac of product," predicted his clothing brand will be nicer than Ralph Lauren and bigger than Louis Vuitton and H&M, and claimed that Yeezus was his Nebraska while his next album will be his Born in the USA. He even offered an explanation for the atrocious "Bound 2" video, which he referred to as the realization of his wish to take "white trash t-shirts and make it into a video":
I wanted it to look as phony as possible….I wanna show you that this is the Hunger Games. I wanna show you that this is the type of imagery that's being presented to all of us, and the only difference is that a black dude is in the middle of it...I'm like Marina Marina Abramović this is performance art. I don't have a problem looking stupid.
His Abramović is more convincing than Gaga's, that's for damn sure.
Highlights of the interview are atop this post, but if you have the 40 or so minutes, you should watch the whole thing below.