Original post date: September 30, 2016.
I'm resharing this Fab Friday post in honor of the 808's & Crabcakes Kanye inspired party happening tomorrow at Blind Whino! FINALLY, a Kanye West party in DC! I am SO excited to attend. Also, random fact- if you follow me on Instagram, whenever you see a caption surrounded by the musical emojis, the quote is 99.5% of the time a Kanye West lyric.
Check out Eventbrite for info/tickets for 808s & Crabcakes.
Today I'm dedicating FAB FRIDAY to Kanye West since I'm making my way to Cleveland in a few hours to see the Saint Pablo tour with my husband and bff tomorrow night (and I can't wait!!!). Before you start reading this post, I already know what you're thinking. Either you're all like "heck yea Kanye is awesome" or "Kanye is a pompous jerk." And my money is that it's likely on the second one. I get it, I used to be the exact same way. Admittedly I always liked his music. I still remember hearing Gold Digger for the first time in college, wilding out with my bffs to Otis and (Men) in Paris, and I have fond memories around My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy album as it was released around when my husband and I started dating again and David gave me a copy of the album (his ringtone is still All of the Lights on my phone!). Even though I liked his music, I thought he was a self righteous know-it-all who compared himself to Jesus (His nickname is YEEZUS, you know, like Jesus), and the 2009 MTV awards......well I always sort of disliked him for that whole spectacle.
However, within the last year or so I started to become more aware of Kanye. I'm honestly not sure what caused it, maybe the media and all the press around he and Kim Kardashian, but I started listening to his older albums again and reading about his background. It was around this time that I begun to understand where he was coming from. I listened to all of his albums from oldest to newest and saw a progression of him as an artist. To me, his older albums share the story of his path to success including the real-life struggles and his perseverance to keep pushing towards his dreams. As you get into his newer albums, you can hear how the fame has affected his career, life and personality, and there is a lot of self reflect too. His songs speak to me not only through his meaningful lyrics, but the beats and mix of music composition is seriously beyond. If you don't believe me on this, I challenge you to listen to My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy front to back and tell me the musical composition of beats and rhythms are not impressively beautiful.
When The Life of Pablo was released in February of this year, that was the icing on the cake for me. I waited in anticipation of the album release during his Yeezy Season 3 fashion show at Madison Square Garden, where Kanye melded his artistic creations from his music and apparel design into something amazing. I watched the entire show in real time online and didn't move for the entirety of it, totally enthralled in the show. The main question at the end of the show I had was "who is Pablo?" and I took to the internet to find an answer. There are many theories, but the one that made the most sense to me, is that 'Pablo' is a symbolic blend of Pablo Neruda, Pablo Picasso, and Pablo Escobar. Pablo Neruda for words, Pablo Picasso for art, and Pablo Escobar for product. The way I interpret it, The Life of Pablo is Kanye's effort to mesh his words (lyrics), art (music), and product (his Yeezy line and Life of Pablo merch) into one. Which to me, is brilliant on all levels.
After peeling back the layers of Kanye West, I think under his hard shell there is an inspirational leader who wants to share his gift of spirituality, music and art with the world. The media has pinned him in such a way that is unlikable to some people, but I think he is misunderstood. The infamous drama of the 2009 MTV awards revolving around Taylor Swift is a prime example. After watching an interview with Amber Rose (Kanye's ex-gf), she talks about the domino effect from his spectacle. It was pinned as a dig at Taylor, but this interview made me realize it wasn't about her, it was about Beyonce not winning the category, and he would've done the same to anyone else who had won instead of Beyonce. I'm not agreeing with what he did, but that did put things in a better light for me about the situation. The recent Taylor drama was also eye-opening for me, as Kanye was pinned in a bad way for Famous, when she had known about the song all along. And while I hate to admit this, I have a new found respect for Kim Kardashian for leaking the Snapchat videos proving Taylor knew all along, because I'd do the exact same thing for someone messing with my husband. I think Kanye is so passionate about his thoughts that he gets wrapped up in emotions and lets this get the best of him at the wrong time (hence his lyrics, I've been outta my mind a long time. I've been saying how I feel at the wrong time- Feedback, The Life of Pablo).
Under it all, I have to give props to Kanye about his passions. I only wish I could be so passionate about things and have the courage to always say how I feel and the extreme talent that he does. I view his lyrics as words of encouragement, inspiration, spirituality, and best of all- humor. Kanye has reached me on a spiritual level, and if you are not a Kanye fan, I hope my views have at least opened your mind a bit on who he is as an artist. While I could go on and on about him, I'm fearing I may have already lost readers from this lengthy post (1,681 words to be exact!), so I'm wrapping up with my favorite Kanye lyrics and details of my Kanye dress I'm wearing to the concert below. If you have time free time this weekend, turn on some Kanye and catch the vibe.
Shop my look:
Fave Kanye Lyrics:
It seems we living the american dream/But the people highest up got the lowest self esteem/The prettiest people do the ugliest things/For the road to riches and diamond rings
-All Falls Down, The College Dropout
I gotta testify/Come up in the spot lookin' extra fly
-Touch the Sky, Late Registration
And I've realized that I've arrived, cuz/It take more than a magazine to kill my Vibe
-Diamonds are Forever, Late Registration
Haters sayin' ya changed/Now ya doin' ya thang
-Good Morning, Graduation
You don't see just how fly my style is?/I don't see why I need a stylist/When I shop so much I can speak Italian
And I wonder if you know/What it means to find your dreams/I've been waiting on this my whole life/These dreams be waking me up at night
-I Wonder, Graduation
Reach for the stars so if you fall, you land on a cloud
She don't believe in shooting stars/But she believe in shoes and cars
-Flashing Lights, Graduation
Holding on to what I believe in/No matter what/You'll never take that from me/My reign is as far as your eyes can see
-Amazing, 808s & Heartbreak
There is no clothes that I could buy/That could turn back the time/There is no vacation spot I could fly/That could bring back a piece of real life/Real life, what does it feel like?
-Pinocchio Story, 808s & Heartbreak
But what’s worse, the pain or the hangover?
-Dark Fantasy, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
I'm living in the 21st century doin' something mean to it/Do it better then anybody you ever seen do it/Screams from the haters, got a nice ring to it/I guess every superhero need his theme music
-Power, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
I hit the Jamaican spot, at the bar, take a seat/I ordered you jerk, she said "you are what you eat"/you see I always loved your sense of humour/but tonight you should have seen how quiet the room was/the Lyor Cohen or Dior Homme, that's Dior Homme, not Dior homie
Devil in a New Dress, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Lord, please let them accept the things they can't change/And pray that all of their pain be champagne
Otis, Watch the Throne
Ignore the critics just to say we did it/This ain't no fashion show, (censor), we live it
-Made in America, Watch the Throne
But I’ve been talking to God for so long/That if have you look in my life I guess he talking back
Clique, Cruel Summer
She say "Can you get my friends in the club?"/I say "Can you get my Benz in the club?"/If not, treat your friends like my Benz/Park they ass outside 'til the evening end
-Send It Up, Yeezus
Close your eyes and let the world paint a thousand pictures
-Bound 2, Yeezus
I don't even want to say nothing/Everybody gon' say something/I'd be worried if they said nothing
Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1, The Life of Pablo
She spent her whole check on some Christians/And that girl ain't even religious
-Highlights, The Life of Pablo
See through the veil/And forget all of your cares/Throw them, throw them away/Don't stop your loving/Don't stop for nothing/No, not for nothing
-FML, The Life of Pablo
Real friends, how many of us?/How many of us, how many jealous? Real friends/It's not many of us, we smile at each other/But how many honest?
-Real Friends, The Life of Pablo
Every time I talk they say I'm too aggressive/I was out here spazzin', all y'all get the message?
-Facts, The Life of Pablo
The media said he's way out of control/I just feel like I'm the only one not pretending/I'm not out of control, I'm just not in their control
-Saint Pablo, The Life of Pablo
Let me not say too much or do too much/Cause if I'm up way too much, I'm out of touch/I'm praying a out-of-body experience will happen/So the people can see my light, now it's not just rapping
-Saint Pablo, The Life of Pablo
Blonde in the District