West, the child of a photographer and erstwhile Black Panther beget and a college professor mother, grew up in Chicago and attended Chicago State University for one class before dropping out to pursue a career in music. early on he demonstrated his considerable abilities as a producer, contributing to Jermaine Dupri ’ mho album Life in 1472 ( 1998 ) before relocating to the New York City area, where he made his identify with his output work for Roc-A-Fella Records, particularly on knocker Jay-Z ’ s album Blueprint ( 2001 ). West ’ s nice use of accelerate sample-based beats soon made him much in demand as a producer, but he struggled to be allowed to make his own recordings ( partially because of the perception that his middle-class background denied him credibility as a rapper ). When he finally released his debut solo album, The College Dropout ( 2004 ), it was massively successful : sales soared, and critics gushed over its sonic sophistication and clever pun, which blended liquid body substance, faith, insight, and political awareness on songs such as “ Through the Wire ” and the gospel -choir-backed “ Jesus Walks. ” The latter cut won a Grammy Award for best rap birdcall in 2005, and West besides picked up awards that class for best knock album and best rhythm-and-blues sung ( as one of the songwriters of Alicia Keys ’ s “ You Don ’ metric ton Know My Name ” ) .
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Abetted by his aureate personality, West promptly rose to stardom. His second album, recently adjustment ( 2005 ), repeated the commercial achiever of his first—with a phone number of reach singles, including “ Diamonds from Sierra Leone ” and “ Gold Digger ” —and earned West three more Grammy Awards. He besides gained attention for his widely quoted assertion that the federal government ’ s behind response to the Hurricane Katrina calamity in New Orleans in 2005 demonstrated that U.S. Pres. George W. Bush “ doesn ’ thyroxine care about black people ” —a comment that Bush late characterized as one of the worst moments of his presidency .Kanye West Kanye West performing at the 47th annual Grammy Awards, February 13, 2005 .© Frank Micelotta/Getty Images As his career as a performer took off, West continued to work as a manufacturer, with credits including songs by such high-profile artists as Nas, Mariah Carey, and Beyoncé. He besides founded the record label GOOD Music. His one-third release, Graduation ( 2007 ), produced the hit singles “ beneficial Life ” and “ Stronger ” and garnered him four more Grammy Awards. In 2008 West released 808s and Heartbreak, an album that dwelled on feelings of personal loss and repent. Its heavy differed radically from his former releases, as West chose to sing ( with the aid of a vocal production tool called Auto-Tune ) rather than rap his lyrics. West spent much of late 2009 rehabilitating his image. He had rushed the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards, preempting Taylor Swift ’ s acceptance language for best female video, to declare that “ Beyoncé had one of the best television of all time. ” Video footage of the incident promptly went viral on the Internet, and West found himself vilified in the media. A series of apologies, some of them appearing as a stream-of-consciousness narrative on West ’ s Twitter feed, soon followed. The brashness that caused him such trouble in 2009 fueled a exultant return to music the adopt year, with My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, a monumentally complex exploration of the nature of success and fame. With potent rhymes that were in equal parts boastful and reticent, instrumentation that ranged from tribal drums to soaring orchestral accompaniment, and a list of guest performers that included Jay-Z, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Chris Rock, the album represented some of West ’ s most ambitious work, and it was rewarded with a trio of Grammys. He followed it with Watch the Throne ( 2011 ), a Billboard chart-topping collaboration with Jay-Z that featured the Grammy-winning singles “ Otis, ” “ Niggas in Paris, ” and “ No Church in the Wild. ”
In 2012 West presented Cruel Summer, a compilation album featuring him and some of the artists signed to his full Music label. A year later, on Yeezus ( 2013 ), West continued to explore the dark corners of his mind, at times filtering his observations through the provocative lens of racial politics, as on “ New Slaves. ” In contrast to the extravagance of his previous solo efforts, the album found him rapping over jagged minimalist arrangements evocative of house and industrial music and embellished with spare samples of soul and dancehall vocalists. Its most successful single was “ Bound 2, ” in part because of its blue music television featuring West and his then girlfriend, the reality-television headliner Kim Kardashian. ( The couple, who were frequently in the populace eye, were married in 2014. In 2021 it was announced that they were divorcing. ) In February 2015 West, in conjunction with german apparel company Adidas, unveiled the first “ season, ” or solicitation, of his long-awaited fashion line, YEEZY. YEEZY Season 1 featured men ’ s and women ’ s streetwear, including outsize sweaters, military- and surplus-inspired jackets, sneakers, boots, and more. West ’ mho fashion sour continued leading up to the liberation of his eighth studio apartment album, The Life of Pablo ( 2016 ) ; in fact, he debuted tracks from the album at his case of YEEZY Season 3 at Madison Square Garden in New York. The gospel-tinged album further demonstrated West ’ sulfur inventiveness as a producer, but critics found it disjointed. In addition, the oeuvre itself was slightly overshadowed by the unconventional circumstances of its release ; after making an initial version of the album available on-line, West continued to tinker with it in the studio, calling it a “ surviving breathing changing creative expression. ” The tour supporting the album was abruptly canceled in November 2016, and West was briefly hospitalized. West ’ randomness fifth fashion collection, YEEZY Season 5, was released at New York Fashion Week in February 2017. West was uncharacteristically silence for respective months before provocatively reemerging on social media in April 2018. He notably defended a statement he had made in a telecast interview suggesting that african american slaves had cooperated in their enslavement. Later that year he released the chaotic and faze ye, on which he declared that he is bipolar. Kids See Ghosts, a collaboration with rapper Kid Cudi, followed concisely thereafter. Like ye, it focused on mental health but to much better effect ; intense and skittish, the album was wide viewed as more interest and rewarding than West ’ s solo effort. His next passing, Jesus Is King, was a gospel album that reflected his recommitment to Christianity ; it belated won the Grammy for best contemporaneous Christian music album. During this clock West remained involved in manner, and YEEZY Season 6 and Season 7 were released in 2018 and 2019, respectively, though neither was shown at New York Fashion Week. In July 2020, less than four months before the election, West announced that he was running for president as a member of the Birthday Party. He did little campaigning, but he released a chopine that notably called for reforming the patrol and legal system, reducing scholar debt, and having prayer in schools. republican Pres. Donald Trump and his followers supported West ’ mho campaigning, believing that he could lure some voters away from the democratic campaigner, Joe Biden, in what was expected to be an fabulously close election. however, West ultimately garnered lone 0.04 percentage of the national vote, not enough to have any effect on the consequence. In 2021 his tenth studio album, Donda, was released, featuring collaborations with such artists as JAY-Z and The Weeknd. Later that year Kanye West formally changed his name to Ye.