The singer and songwriter Kanye West is in news for his monologue in front of the US President Donald Trump in the Oval Office. The rapper was wearing a red hat bearing Trump’s campaign slogan “Make America Great Again.” He said the hat makes him feel like Superman. West has been vocal in his endorsement of the businessman turned politician since December 2016 after Trump was declared the President-elect.
So who is Kanye West?
West was born in the Georgian city of Atlanta on June 8, 1977, and was raised in Chicago. He first came in the spotlight as a producer in the early 2000s. He then produced singles for artists like Jay-Z and Ludacris. He launched his solo career with the album The College Dropout in 2004. He later released other successful albums like Late Registration (2005), Graduation (2007), 808s & Heartbreak (2008). My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010) and Yeezus (2013).
Kanye West is one of the most successful musicians of this century both critically and commercially. He has an impressive 21 Grammys and is at the same time one of the best-selling musicians ever. His musical styles have diverged considerably from synthpop to electro to indie rock.
Apart from his music career, West is also famous (or infamous) for his relationship with reality TV star Kim Kardashian. The couple married in 2014 after dating for two years. The celebrity status of both the members of this relationship has resulted in unprecedented media coverage of their relationship and subsequent marriage.
West’s views have often been deemed contrarian. He is accused of being the dissenter just for the sake of it. He sparked controversy in 2016 by tweeting, “BILL COSBY INNOCENT !!!!!!!!!!” referring to the stand-up comedian and actor. West did not explain how he came to his conclusion and never elaborated further.
He has also been accused of appearing to endorse institutionalised slavery. In May earlier this year, West said while speaking to TMZ, “When you hear about slavery for 400 years … for 400 years? That sounds like a choice. You were there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all. It’s like we’re mentally imprisoned.” He was forced to apologise in August.