Photo by Joshua Mellin
Kanye West had a lot on his mind when he took the stage in Newark, NJ on Saturday Night. Over the course of 20 minutes, Kanye’s latest stream of conscious touched on a variety of topics, including Drake’s recent comments to Rolling Stone about the lyrical content of Yeezus, the media in general, Apple CEO Tim Cook, and this year’s Grammy Awards.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Drake is quoted as saying, “There were some real questionable bars on [Yeezus]. Like that ‘Swaghili’ line? Come on, man. Fabolous wouldn’t say some shit like that.” Drake has disputed he even made the comments, writing on Twitter, “I never commented on Yeezus for my interview portion of Rolling Stone.”
From Kanye’s perspective, the blame falls squarely on Rolling Stone: “Let me tell you what it is about magazines: they always be trying to pit niggas against each other,” Kanye told the Newark audience. “That ain’t going down anymore. We love Drake.” He added, “If anything, we are going to go after those motherfuckers and their negativity, because before they print shit like that, they need to check with me and him to see if it’s OK before they get ran up in their motherfuckin office. It only cost 250 to beat your ass.”
Kanye then segued into the media’s portrayal of hip-hop in general. “They’ll try to write you out the history of books… When they say rapper, they’re picturing an interchangeable nigga with gold chains and a red leather jacket, not somebody who was raised by two educators. They say ‘the ‘rapper’ Kanye West, they’re not saying that to say it’s the person who designed ‘this shit’. They’re not saying that to say this is the person who gave you 10 years.”
So every media outlet, I don’t care who you are. Don’t play yourself. Respect as such. SNL, all you writers, Lorne Michaels, respect it as such. Because when we’re standing face to face, you know who you’re talking at. You know you see me as a genuine creator of 2014. You know you’re looking in the face of Miles Davis, you know you’re looking in the face of Lauryn Hill, you know you’re looking in the face of Pac, you know you’re looking in the face of Biggie, you know you’re looking in the face of Prince, you know you’re looking in the face of every genuine creator. This ain’t no spoof, so play this shit at your motherfucking meetings when you write your jokes, play this shit back when you’re writing your headlines for the tabloids. Then go to your little guitar and play that little song that almost made it, then play ‘Jesus Walks’.
Kanye also had some choices words for Apple CEO Tim Cook, supposedly over a festival he was asked to perform at. Kanye sang/said, “Hey, Tim Cook, the Head of Apple, stop trying to get performers to play your festivals for free. You are rich as fuck. Quit trying to act like you’re so dumb.”
Lastly, Kanye finally chimed in on the 2014 Grammys. He called his two nominations “disrespectful… That’s like giving the waiter a two dollar tip.” And while he wasn’t as critical of Macklemore as Drake, Kanye still took a not-so-subtle swipe at the “Same Love” rapper. “Macklemore knows what it is. He knows what it is, he made some good music, he’s a good kid, but you all know what it is.”
Watch the full 20-minute stream of conscious below.