Back in 2003, the Chicago hip-hopper decided to use his fame and fortune for good will and started up the Kanye West Foundation. The goal is to “combat the severe dropout problems in schools by enabling under-served youth access to programs to unleash their creativity and reach their full potential.” To accomplish this, Kanye has used performance, in the form of benefit concerts.
The latest came after West was contacted by Zack Harris, a high school sophomore and founder of Students Helping Our World (S.H.O.W.) with a tempting offer: A free concert for students who improve their grades. He accepted, kept his word, and performed at the Chicago Theatre last month.
This past weekend, however, Fuse debuted what was essentially a recap of the festivities, complete with interviews from the involved parties and video of the performance. The latter included both new (“Heartless”) and old (“Jesus Walks”), as well as some rather emotional moments as well, namely seen during “Hey Mama”. As always in the case when talking about a Kanye West performance, to say it is captivating and entertaining would be gigantic understatements.
However, the overall message tends to be slightly misguided, especially considering the lyrical content of Kanye’s songs, many of which focus on his past. After all, Kanye himself dropped out of Chicago State University because of poor grades and a primary interest in his music career. It makes sense, but perhaps not within the context of the lesson he is trying to teach — stay in school and keep your grades up.I
I guess we’ll have to ignore that part. But hey, the kids are happy…