Kanye West Addresses Hip-Hop’s Homophobia In A 2005 Interview

Back in 2005, Kanye West addressed the challenges and issues of Gay Rights and homophobia in the Hip-hop world, a topic that we, unfortunately, still face today.

In this interview with MTV News, the Kanye West and Sway Calloway go into a deeper, more profound discourse over the topic of homophobia and how it is seen and expressed in the Hip-hop world.

West, though he fronts the over-luxurious and ego-maniacal rap deity to his fans and the general public, he actually has always had a very eloquent and thoughtful mind. In this 3 minutes and 32 seconds video of the Old Kanye, we hear him speak about his own realization of how inappropriately and unfairly gays are viewed and displayed through Rap and Hip-hop. He goes on to then explain how he had been a part of that oblivious and inconsiderate group that made him so heartless to the minority. Only until he had his own connection to the gay community did he understand that there was no room or need for judgement.

Almost over 10 years ago, Kanye West took a massive stance for the world by attempting to ban the negativity behind the words from Hip-hop.

Kanye himself, stood up for Caitlyn Jenner when she was going through her transformation, stating:

“Look, I can be married to the most beautiful woman in the world, and I am. I can have the most beautiful little daughter in the world, and I have that. But I’m nothing if I can’t be me. If I can’t be true to myself, they don’t mean anything.”

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In the video, if you look at him, he genuinely is trying to think about the whole situation, and how very wrong it is. He recalls walking in high school and how people would tease and bully him for being gay if he ever wore and did something that people thought was “weird.” He described how he used to be picked on for being a “mama’s boy” which then grew into homophobic slurs like “fag” or gay,” which he would then mimic back.

West said, “it made me kind of homophobic, because I would go back and question myself, like damn why doesn’t anybody else walk like that, ‘cuz I walk like this, and they walk like this…” His voice elevates as he brings up the serious fact about bullying and how it pushes people to hide from themselves because of the negative connotation to stigmatized personas that society doesn’t wish to accept.

He realized that being a part of the Hip-hop community, “thugged” him out; in other words, it made him harsher and colder to and more detached from the idea of people liking the same sex. “Everybody in hip -hop discriminates against gay people, to me that’s one of the standards of Hip-hop,” he tells Sway. He found himself using words like “fag” and “gay” consistently and constantly whenever he wanted to say something was per se Whack.

In this candid discussion between West and Sway, West wants to get to the bottom of this deep-rooted homophobia. He admits that It wasn’t until he realized his own cousin was gay that West changed his tune and mindset. “It was a turning point when I was like, ‘Yo, this is my cousin. I love him and I’ve been discriminating against gays.’”

It all started to click then, and how these words were being used in “opposite” in Hip-hop music. After thinking for a few moments, he continues to tell MTV, what could be one of the most significant statements he could profess:

“This is hip-hop. The genre has always been about “speaking your mind and about breaking down barriers, but everyone in hip-hop discriminates against gay people,” he gets flustered here by the man, who seems to want to throw him off. West pleads to give him a chance to get this off his chest and then says “I wanna just come on TV and just … tell my rappers, tell my friends ‘Yo stop it fam…just stop all that.’”

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The best of all of this, is the fact that he calls upon Hip-hop to look back at their roots and see where it began. It started as a form of freedom from discrimination. It was the cry to end all suffering through the voice of music and rap. To discriminate and prey upon another minority to only seem bigger and better is to only defeat the purpose of their cause. That is what Ye wanted to bring to light, the real values of which Hip-hop was founded upon.

Nevertheless, we are finding that Hip-hop has been trying to take a turn for the better for these communities of people who deserve love and support. They have always deserved it, even before the Orlando shootings.

From such provocative and egalitarian songs like Macklemore’s “Same Love,” or Angel Haze’s “Candlxs,” or even Lil B’s I’m Gay album. It seems that Kanye West’s message influenced quite a few people in the music industry, as such words have now been used less often and conversations of negativity towards these people, like any other people, have been diminishing. In that moment, Kanye West became one of the first hip-hop heads to truly come out against homophobia.

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Kanye West Announces the “Saint Pablo” Tour

“We don’t want no devils in the house, God (Yes, Lord)”… We just want, Kanye, yes, Lord, because he has announced that he will be officially touring on what will be the Saint Pablo Tour.

“Ultralight Beam” – Kanye West

How does one even begin to describe the astronomical reaction this tour has created? The hype is so real for the ‘New Kanye’ shows; take for example when he attempted a pop-up show in New York city when a festival was cancelled and shut down an entire block! Everyone was on their toes, in wonder of whether Ye was going to pull the plug and let everyone know about a forthcoming concert series for Pablo. Well, the wait was finally over when Kanye officially announced via TIDAL the Saint Pablo Tour which will kick off in August.

A lot of people don’t probably recall, but back in April, Yeezy himself revealed some information regarding a possible tour when he thanked his fans on Twitter who all supported him in getting The Life of Pablo to No. 1. He posted, “I’m so happy that you guys like the music… I’m working on the tour designs now…” Oh, Kanye?

Soon after, during an interview on Steve Harvey’s Show, he confirmed that the tour would absolutely occur and that it would commence, at what he thought at the time would be tour would start sometime in September.

He said on the show that day:

You know my tour game is strong,” he said. “My tour game is unprecedented. So we’re going to go out in September I believe, and we’re just working on some of the ideas right now. But as I said before, I’m trying to literally inspire these kids the way Disney inspired me when I saw the original Star Wars.

Kim Kardashian also had given a few hints to fans in her own tweets on news of the tour.

Kanye West / The Saint Pablo Tour

And just to add a dash of even more hype, the Chicago-native has made the show an incredibly limited tour. According to reports, there will only be two dozen shows that will only show up in cities in the USA and Canada. It will start on August 25th, in Indianapolis, but just as quickly as it came, it will be over on October 29th, ending in Las Vegas. Way to make another statement, Kanye.  The tour will hit almost 40 major cities across North America. This is such a unique and significant moment for Kanye and for the project because this will mark the first time The Life of Pablo will ever be performed live; in addition, it will also be the first time in a long time that Yeezus goes on tour again since his last run in 2014.

There was a recent update too, that due to overwhelming pre-sale demand of tickets, Kanye was forced to add several more dates to his Saint Pablo Tour. Here are the new dates below:

Wednesday, August 31, 2016: Toronto, ONAir Canada Centre

Friday, September 16, 2016: Miami, FLAmerican Airlines Arena

Tuesday, September 27, 2016: Grand Rapids, MIVan Andel Arena

Sunday, October 23, 2016: Oakland, CAOracle Arena

Tuesday, October 27, 2016: Los Angeles, CAForum

With all that being said, The Life of Pablo set several records for TIDAL upon its release on Feb. 14. Just 10 days after its release, the album reached over 250 millions streams and doubled the streaming service’s subscriber base from 1 million to 2.5 million. That was it, just that tiny window of exclusivity was enough to make data and customer analytics sky rocket, to which then it was released on other platforms such as Apple Music and Spotify.

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Tickets will be available V soon to the Saint Pablo Tour and will go on sale for exclusive TIDAL subscribers and American Express members this Thursday, June 16th at 10 AM. After that, tickets will be available to the rest of the public starting as of Friday, June 17th.

Want more info on the full tour schedule? Go onto TIDAL now to purchase from livenation.com.

In other Kanye news, check out what went down at Tyler, The Creator’s fashion show when he made an appearance and what that was all about. And be sure to listen to the album below to prep for what is to be a legendary tour experience:

ScHoolboy Q Reveals New Album Title & Cover Art

At the end of last month, Hip-hop artist, ScHoolboy Q, revealed not only the release date to his much anticipated studio album, but he also exposed the project’s cover art!

Now he’s got the crowd both hyped and flustered by the creativity and ridiculousness of the album artwork. There have been lots of jokes made; nevertheless, all comments are positive and more than excited for the bad-boy mogul to share more music.

He also recently dropped a video for his recent feature on Kanye West’s single “THat Part.” The TDE rapper revealed his next project’s title and cover with a simple tweet of the date “JULY 8tH” and the image attached:

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JULY 8tH

So, there you have it; the Blank Face LP will be available on July 8th!

L.A.’s Puffy comically uses the notorious Jordan Crying Face meme based off of Michael Jordan’s 2009 acceptance speech, at the Basketball Hall of Fame, but this time, with no face? Or um, emotion? What does this mean, ScHoolboy?

Twitter quickly imploded with fans tweets on the reveal. You can see some examples of these tweets that were posted below!

So,  Michael Jordan is now an album cover, whether he wanted that to be the case or not. No royalties, though. Sorry, Magic.

This album will serve as the follow-up to ScHoolboy’s previous 2014 album Oxymoron.

Watch out because ScHoolboy is totally going for world meme domination with this album cover.

So, what seemingly great tracks will the American Hip-hop artist have in store for us now? It may seem a long way away, but July 8th is just around the corner and fans will be tentatively waiting for the drop. Let us know what you think the album will be like and what you think of the cover title and album art!

Logic Stunts New Single “Flexicution”

 

“Check the Forbes list, you know I’m balling now.” ~Logic, “Flexicution”

For more than two months, fans have been teased by Hip-hop artist, Logic, and his snapchats and tweets, hinting towards a new single release titled “Flexicution.” Fans were quite literally begging for him to drop the track, and to stop all of the mind games. The Maryland rapper had built such hype for the song that the general audience created its own hashtag trend, #DropFlexicution, in order to influence their rap-god. All that really did, though, was inspire a lot of memes.

Nevertheless, earlier this Tuesday morning, he finally blessed listeners with this gift. The gift may be an aggressive one, but it was extremely well-received by his fans. The track was produced by Logic’s frequent collaborator, Arjun “6ix” Ivatury. You can listen to the track in the video above.

With many thank you’s and a lot of excitement, Young Sinatra shared this masterpiece with the public.

Sir Logic is no doubt balling out as he finally flexes the highly anticipated and extremely impressive track.

This bouncy, heavy beater track gets you ready to run the streets, as the music paves the way for a perfect Hip-hop composition to rapped over. The snares and beats lead the instrumental as Logic’s fast-paced rhymes shoot out like rapid fire, especially in the second verse! The little whine at the climax of the word “flexicution” only adds to the emphasis of the word. Not many rappers can pull off quick-spoken spits like that, but much like Eminem, Logic goes at it with determination and power. It’s mind blowing how fast this Visionary Music Group and Def Jam artist can go at them words and make this track hard as hell.

At the end of the track, there are angelic vocals serving as the bridge and the ending verse to smooth out  the edginess. Logic manically speeches his rhymes, getting a few thoughts off his chest, fighting his heart out, and flexing out on the competition with “Flexicution.”

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His most recent album, The Incredible True Story, was released last November. He has recently been reported to have told Rolling Stone magazine that he is working on two new albums simultaneously! So, I guess we better be expecting a little more tease from the rapper in the coming months. In other news, Logic will be joining G-Eazy and Yo Gotti on tour this summer, so be sure to grab your tickets!

A$AP Ferg Joins X Ambassadors in a New Verse On “Low Life”

All you low lives out there, this song is for you. X Ambassadors team up with A$AP Ferg for a new verse on their track “Low Life,” to create a show-stopper.

Once again, rock meets rap, and it’s the perfect marriage of genres- a very difficult feat to accomplish.

I won’t lie, it was extremely strange hearing the American rock-band lead singer, Sam Harris, announce and introduce the Hip-hop artist’s name. Rap & rock collaborations are never easy to pull off and so excuse the crowd if we were all doubtful of this partnership at first.

Many were unsure of the collaboration, but when A$AP Ferg jumped on stage with X Ambassadors during their recent performance at Terminal 5 in NYC (shown in the video above), thoughts of skepticism were diminished.

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Ferg’s delivery was somewhat flawless in the way it moved along with the song and met with the simplistic guitar riffs at every note and with the drums at every beat. His new album, Always Strive And Prosper, proves to fans and listeners how he is becoming a more consistent and versatile artist in the music industry.

The heavy-hitting Harlem rapper killed his verse in the hit single of 2015 for the X Ambassadors, as he brought the modern rock anthem back to its former place in peoples’ hearts and minds. He was able to make the low-life seem a little less daunting and a little more bold and charismatic.

Sam Harris sings with intense emotion:

“Thinking ’bout my own life
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life”

Followed by Jamie N Commons piece:

“Wanna be a better man, but it’s a hard life
Without that love inside you, it’s a cold bind”

And then Ferg’s segment:

“A low life was my uncle when he hit that crystal
That glass pipe and that rock had him toting pistols
He was higher than a missile with a dozen issues
And every time he cried, he never reached for tissue”

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The song is so raw and evoking by itself, but with the additions, the track is a little more grimy, rough, and bad-ass.

There is a studio version of this unlikely but strikingly impactful collab, which also features Jamie N Commons, on the new album VHS 2.0.

You can now stream the song below, for your own listening pleasure.

 

Listen to Kanye West Track “Champions” Featuring G.O.O.D Music Label Artists

Kanye is back with his crew for a banger for y’all, that is basically, the ultimate hype kit track, “Champions.”

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One week after Kanye West premiered the original track on Power 106 and 92.3 on Big Boy’s Neighborhood Show, earlier in June, he released the official version of “Champions” to the public on Apple Music and iTunes. This was a team project that took collaboration to a whole other level. An epic rap battle of intensity, rage, and talent.

The track was constructed by the joint-production of A-Trak, Lex Luger, Charlie Heat and Mike Dean, including such Hip-hop All Stars as, Quavo, Travi$ Scott, Big Sean, Gucci Mane, Desiigner, Yo Gotti & 2 Chainz. If anything, this track is no short of being perfect. It’s absolute fire!!

Now we have the CDQ version available. The first single is from G.O.O.D. Music’s second compilation album Cruel Winter. With the superstar features on this track, listeners have been raving about it.

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Apparently the 5 minutes was not long enough for the Atlanta-born artist, because he has also promised a 12-to-15 minute version that features every artist signed to his G.O.O.D. Music label!

According to him, Cruel Winter is meant to be the sequel to the 2012 G.O.O.D. Music label compilation Cruel Summer. Makes sense. Glad he’s following the seasons. When this is to be released is still uncertain, but it is expected to be completed before the end of the year.

More about the song itself, it fosters such a heavy beat whilst still being as smoothly enticing as possible. It’s got the subwoofers, drums, shouts, screams, spits, and synths. The verses rapped by the artists flow so perfectly, though each of their styles are so different.  Quavo takes on the intro, rap after rap followed by La Flame who slays with the hook, “Round and round we go!” Travi$ Scott jumps in with the hook and then comes in, with force, the king himself, the new and the old Kanye. Big Sean and 2 Chainz assert their presence amongst the other artists with lengthy verses that have a vibe of their own. Even Guwop, who had only been a week out of prison, scored two verses, “Now that Gucci home it’s over for you Gucci clones!” This song is stacked with a wicked line-up that would kill any and every game.

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Nonetheless, you can’t please everybody. There were some fans that were dissatisfied with Desiigner’s appearance on the track, but I do not feel it destroyed any essence of the recording itself.

West has been flooding his fans with new music from his squad and himself for the past year, but no one’s complaining. With this track, there’s no doubt that these guys fulfill their title as “champions” of the soundwaves. Who do you think had the best verse?

And what are you waiting for? You can now officially stream West’s new track with the posse here, so press that Ye button! Peace.

Chance The Rapper Surprise Appearances at J. Cole & Bryson Tiller’s Bonnaroo Sets

J. Cole and Bryson Tiller were set up for some awesome performances at Bonnaroo Music Festival 2016 this year, and it was only going to get better when Chance the Rapper crashed their sets and surprised the crowd!

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MANCHESTER, TN – JUNE 11: (L-R) Miguel and Chance The Rapper perform on June 11, 2016 in Manchester, Tennessee. (Photo by Erika Goldring/Getty Images)

He wasn’t meant to perform at Bonnaroo this year in Manchester, TN, but Chano wouldn’t miss the chance to perform with the boys and sing out to all of the screaming fans! As Miguel and J. Cole were performing their sets, out from the sidelines emerged the Chicago-born spirit to join in on the fun on stage. He not only came out for J. Cole at 9 PM, but he also appeared for Bryson Tiller at Midnight, and at both shows he performed his track off Coloring Book, “No Problem,” featuring 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne. Of course, those two weren’t there, but it didn’t matter, because it was a banging time nevertheless!

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MANCHESTER, TN – JUNE 11: Recording artist Chance the Rapper (L) and Miguel perform onstage at That Tent during Day 3 of the 2016 Bonnaroo Arts And Music Festival on June 11, 2016 in Manchester, Tennessee. (Photo by FilmMagic/FilmMagic for Bonnaroo Arts And Music Festival )

Chance shocked the crowd again on Saturday night when he appeared on stage for both Miguel and Macklemore’s performances! There he offered a live version of their Unruly Mess I’ve Made track “Need to Know.” He and Miguel then covered the Notorious B.I.G. classic “Juicy.”

With the power and energy Chance carries, these shows were epic, bringing a whole new life to the party and making an unforgettable experience for the crowd.

See some clips of the performances taken by fans themselves below!

Were you there to catch the event and hype? Were you surprised?!

 

Selena Gomez Holds Back Tears During Tribute to Christina Grimmie

Selena Gomez, took a moment during her usual Revival tour to pay tribute to her lost friend.

In memory of Christina GrimmieSelena Gomez dedicated her song to her during her concert in Miami, Florida the other night, remembering: “when she was 14, we met her and my parents and I signed her.”  She said this with a wavering voice and tear-filled eyes. “One thing about Christina and her family is that she holds her faith so closely to her. And I think it’s not about a religion and it’s not about anything or good deeds. It’s just that she had faith, and I don’t really understand how this really happened, but I would like to dedicate this next song to her.”

You can see her perform this little homage and kind gesture to the lost starlet in the video above.

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The whole thing was heartfelt as she took to the black grand piano and played “Transfiguration” followed by “Nobody,” which she barely had the ability to finish because of the extreme emotion getting to her. She had to take a moment to collect herself and apologize to the audience for letting her feelings get the best of her, mouthing the words “I’m sorry.”

Apparently, Grimme and Gomez go way back. It was Gomez’ stepfather, Brian Teefy, who had discovered Grimmie on YouTube back when she was still in high school and worked by her side as her manager. Grimmie even opened for Gomez’s Stars Dance tour in 2013!

When Gomez heard of the dreadful news, she immediately took to Twitter to tweet a photo of herself goofing around with Grimmie. Gomez then shared a link to a Go Fund Me page that would support Grimmie’s family. Mr. Teefey considered Grimmie a “second daughter.”

So with that Go Fund Me page that Teefey had created, he was able to already raise more than $100,000!

He wrote in his letter to the family and to the world:

“Words cannot begin to describe the pain I am feeling. I learned this business through the eyes of a father and Christina was like a second daughter to me. All I wanted to do was assist her in achieving her musical dreams while protecting her from the pitfalls associated with the business. I never could have imagined this horrific event being one of the pitfalls needing to be avoided. In Christina’s honor, I have created a GoFundMe page to assist her family in their time of need.”

In addition, Adam Levine, Grimmie’s coach when she competed on the sixth season of The Voice told her fans how devastated he was by the news and decided to cover her funeral expenses. Marcus, the singer’s brother was at a loss for words, heartbroken but grateful for all of the love and support given to his sister.

Other members of The Voice, such as Blake Shelton added that he was “stunned and disgusted and heartbroken that we lost that sweet little girl.” The show itself tweeted out, “There are no words. We lost a beautiful soul with an amazing voice. Our hearts go out to the friends, fans and family.”

You can donate to Grimmie’s GoFundMe page here.