Kanye West deconstructed some of the music world’s most toxic complications on stage in London last night. During a 10-minute soliloquy that was entirely eerie, Kanye asked the big questions about corporate-sponsored concerts and business-driven art. “I came here for the creativity more than anything … I hate business people,” said Kanye. “The people like, what kind of business is he doing? What’s the numbers? How much can you sell? What’s the radio spins? How much shampoo can you sell with your face on it and shit?”

Pacing an enormous stage, backed by bare keys, between each series of these big questions, Kanye came back to same haunting refrain: “Remind me again why we in this shit? Remind me again why we in this shit? Remind me again why we in this shit?”

Kanye continued: “Since when was making music about getting rich? Since when was making art about getting rich?” This didn’t come without his privilege-check (“I know its easy for me to say”) but it still resonated hard when he screamed: “Every motherfucking sponsorship! They trying to put their logos on every concert and shit!”

The most haunting moment was when Kanye held his head up, like he was praying or something, enacting a scene where he’d be begging a corporation for money, shining some light on how fucking crazy insane and scary it is that artists are so dependent on corporate checks:

So, you gonna help me put on a better show, corporations? Can you please support me? Please? Me, Kanye West. I swear I’m a nice leader now. I swear I’ll put the pink polo back on. I swear to you. Please. Just for $3 million. I need it so bad. I need a pool in my backyard! So I’ll tell all my fans your shit is cool. And if they believe in me, then they’ll also believe in you. ‘Did we get the check yet? I gotta call the business manager. Did the corporations send the check? What is my public rating? Are people liking me again? Enough to get some money from the corporations? They forgot about the whole Beyoncé thing, right? Cool. Is it OK now?’

Watch the whole clip below.

Comments (40)
  1. This might make sound dumb, but I really can’t tell if this entire article is written with a sarcastic tone or not. If it’s serious then this writer is silly, if it’s not then this writer is silly in a more likable way. Nothing very interesting to me about a guy raising absolutely no new questions , solutions, or ideas in general to the discussion about art for profit. Of course it’s stupidly ironic that the man getting paid for the most for his art, and brags about being paid the most can try and take this stance, but it’s also annoying that he feels he can repeat non-insightful thoughts and that they’re important thoughts because he’s a rich guy.

    • I like that he did this – it’s important to keep people aware of this. By saying “we’re too cynical we know this already” what you are really hoping for is continued submission and ignorance to these issues.

      Also, you’re equating art for profit with corporate sponsorships as the same thing which is… very inaccurate. It suggests to me that you have some stake in these kinds of shitty deals that have corroded the revolutionary/ethical integrity of music and other creative works for some time.

      • dude’s with kim kardashian

      • Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

        • So do we believe Kanye doesn’t profit from corporations? or is this more of a retaliation for me using the term “like a boss”. I think I’m gonna go with the fact that I made a Kony reference at least a year too late.

    • Agreed.

      “The most haunting moment was when Kanye held his head up, like he was praying or something, enacting a scene where he’d be begging a corporation for money, shining some light on how fucking crazy insane and scary it is that artists are so dependent on corporate checks.”

      … like he was praying or something.

  2. That’s pretty weird spam, really comes off real douchey.

  3. and I made $8931 fisting your mom’s asshole! :)

  4. “Kanye West doesn’t care about business people.” – George W. Bush.

    • “Yo, Kanye, I’m really happy for you and I’mma let you finish, but Albini had one of the best anti-music business rants of all time. One of the best anti-music business rants of all time!” -Taylor Swift

    • I might go to the library and use their computer so I can upvote this comment twice

  5. We’re using the term “deconstruct” pretty loosely these days.

  6. You missed another important pot shot in his diatribe: He hates Justin Timberlake’s “Suit & Tie” (He was careful to say he has “love for Hov’,” though.)

    There’s a lot of grey in his words, being that it’s ‘Ye, but this is a great week for people calling out the modern music industry for what it has become. A few days ago, Noisey published this article about online advertising “killing” music journalism (read here.) If you still bother reading my words, you probably know I’ve been saying this all along, but it was nice to see another big website eat its own by pointing out how Pitchfork and another large website — it’s name escapes me at the moment — I believe they’re owned by a large conglomerate known as Buzz-something — anyway, it goes into how all of these websites are focusing more and more on how to make money off of advertising by catering to pop and traffic driving content (aka lists), and then sprinkling them with features and think pieces to maintain their legit “indie” cred.

  7. Can we please stop overstating everything when it comes to Kanye West? Since when is ranting about corporate sponsorship “deconstructing some of the music world’s most toxic complications….” It’s like the same weird impulse that made people say that the Monster video was “Lynchian” (it wasn’t).

  8. Haunted-millionaire-psyche Mr. West is my favorite Mr. West, whether it comes off as profound or silly.

  9. Kanye is the Last Rock Star.

    Hopefully he can abort Timberlake’s career before it gets resuscitated.

  10. God damn now my comment looks silly :((((

  11. If I heard it right, I believe he says, “I swear I’m the nice nigga now!” not “I swear I’m a nice leader now.”

    Also, I wonder if, coming as it did on the heels of the Hov/JT “Suit and Tie” dig, the bit about selling drinks had anything to do with Beyonce.

  12. what the fuck is wrong with you ? :D

  13. Anyone know where I can get a pink polo shirt?

  14. says the dude that popularized “luxury rap”.
    I love his music, but please walk the walk if this is the direction you want to pursue. Otherwise, it’s just a load of hypocritical trash.

  15. If you and Jamie Foxx are doing it, then I guess I’m in too.

  16. def said nice nigga not leader now…

  17. Is this entire article just trying to bait people into commenting about how much of an idiot kanye is?

  18. Yeah, it’s almost like these days seemingly credible music publications go to great lengths to prop up whatever a bullshit artist like Kanye West is saying as if its gospel, or a “pray-

    oh… ish… wait a minute…

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post, reply to, or rate a comment.

%s1 / %s2