Kanye changed plans to perform mid-show at VMAs

One more tidbit from the Kanye 2020 speech at the VMAs the other night is an interesting ‘what if?’ brought on by one of the show’s exec producers at MTV, Van Toffler, said to Billboard.

Did you expect Kanye to talk for so long when accepting the Video Vanguard Award?

We originally thought Kanye was going to do a medley. Then we thought he was going to not do music and talk. Then, about two acts into the show, we thought he would do a couple-song medley. This is after the show started. Then, about an act before, we found out that he might not do music and just speak — but we had to be prepared for both, so we had a track cued up. We were in the truck and we heard this 10 minutes before he was to accept the award.

Is that the latest someone’s thrown you a mid-show change-up?

I think part of the magic and the unpredictability of the VMAs is that probably no other producers in TV would go into a show not knowing what their biggest award winner was going to do. We decided to be open to whatever Kanye wanted because he’s given us so many moments—unexpected ones. So we weren’t sure whether he would break into song or not. We had a track—he would have rapped to his biggest hits.

The track was ready, the speech was ready, and he just went on?

I’m not sure the speech was ready! He didn’t rehearse. I saw him on the red carpet beforehand, but he didn’t tell me what direction he was going to go in. We’ve learned to expect the unexpected. Someone from his camp was with us in the truck and he was surprised too. Nobody knew what he was going to do — or announce that he was going to run for president. We were all surprised. Even Taylor Swift.

Wow, how ’bout that? Did ‘Ye spontaneously come up with the idea to run for president?! This video shows a fan yelling it out to him moments before he made it public.

And even better, and unrelated to the above, some genius spliced Kanye’s speech and spun it into a very feasible Seinfeld opening. Hahaha. Best thing I’ve seen from the internet in a minute.

Leona Lewis “Only One” (Kanye West Cover)

I haven’t kept up on new Leona Lewis too much since her big singles and some random releases shortly thereafter. They were guilty pleasure *Tibs Favs. at the time because Leona has a beautiful voice and is backed by some great production too.

Today, we catch up with a brand new release from Ms. Lewis, inspired by Kanye’s VMA speech! Pretty neat.

And she kills it too! Not much else to add. It’s just beautiful and a fresh take on Kanye’s single at the beginning of the year. Watch, listen, and enjoy.

*Tibs Fav.

KimYe, Weeknd, A$AP, more for Alexander Wang

Alexander Wang brought in the big stars for the 10th anniversary commemorating his collabs with DoSomething.org. I dig the positive vibes here as DoSomething supports the youth (listen to the kids, bro!) and social change.

In addition to the names in the headline, also peep Pusha, Jhene, HAIM, and Lykke Li above representing music. You’ll see some familiar celebs and even more in the official reveal here.

Kanye West announces president candidacy for 2020

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Kanye for President, 2020.

Ha! True. But yeah, Kanye concluded his stream of consciousness with that announcement. And well, not really shocked. What do you guys think?

JT…

Here’s the full transcript — it should be about more than this president announcement, don’t you think? That’ll grab the headlines but the whole speech had its endearing moments, as Shea Serrano breaks down today on Grantland.

“Bro, bro, listen to the kids. Jeremy, I gotta put it down for a second. First of all, thank you Taylor for being so gracious and giving me this award this evening. Thank you. And I often think back to the first day I met you also. I think about when I’m in the grocery store with my daughter and I have a really great conversation about fresh juice at the… you know. And at the end they say, “Oh you’re not that bad after all. And like, I think about it sometimes it crosses my mind a little bit when I go to a baseball game and 60,000 people boo me. It crosses my mind a little bit.

And I think if i had to do it all again—what would I have done? Would I have worn a leather shirt? Would I have drank half a bottle of Hennessy and given the rest of it to the audience? Y’all know you drank that bottle, too. If I had a daughter at that time would I have went on stage and grabbed the mic from someone else’s? You know, this arena tomorrow is gonna be a completely different set up—some concert… This stage will be gone. After that night, the stage was gone but the effect that it had on people remained.

The problem was the contradiction. The contradiction is that I do fight for artists but in that fight, somehow, was disrespectful to artists. I didn’t know how to say the right thing, the perfect thing, I sat at the Grammys and saw Justin Timberlake and CeeLo Green lose. Gnarls Barkley and the [FutureSex/LoveSound] album, and bro, Justin I’m not trying to put you on blast but I saw that man in tears, bro. And I was thinking he deserved to win album of the year. And the small box that we are of entertainers of the evening, how could you explain that?

Sometimes I feel like you know all this shit they run about beef and all that, sometimes I feel like I died for the artist’s opinion, for the artist to have an opinion after they got successful. I’m not no politician bro, and look at that. You know how many times MTV ran that footage again? Because it got more ratings? Do you know how many times they announced Taylor was gonna give me this award? Because it got more ratings?

Listen to the kids, bro.

I still don’t understand award shows. I don’t understand how they get five people who work their entire life one sell records, sell concert tickets to come stand on a carpet and for the first time in they life be judged on a chopping block and have the opportunity to be considered a loser. I don’t understand it bro. I do not understand when the biggest album or the biggest video I don’t understand. I’ve been conflicted bro. I just wanted people to like me more. But fuck that, bro. 2015. I will die for the art for what I believe in and the art ain’t always gonna be polite. Y’all might be thinking right now, “I wonder did he smoke something before he came out here?” And the answer is yes, I rolled up a little something, I knocked the edge off. I don’t know what’s gonna happen tonight what’s gonna happen tomorrow bro but all I can say to my artists is just worry about how you feel at the time. I’m confident I believe in myself. We the millenials bro. This is a new mentality. We’re not gonna control our kids with brands. We’re not gonna tech low self esteem and hate to our kids. We’re gonna teach our kids that they can be something. that they can stand up for themselves. To believe in themselves and if my grandfather was here right now, he would not let me back down.

I don’t know what I’m finna lose after this it don’t matter though because it ain’t about me, it’s about new ideas bro people with ideas people who believe in truth. and yes, as you proabably could’ve guessed by this moment I have decided in 2020 to run for president.”

BTW, thought this was great:

https://twitter.com/HipHopParallel/status/638187824492101632

Big Sean VMA speech

The night’s best moment: Big Sean’s gracious acceptance speech for his most powerful music video to date: “One Man Can Change The World” — and now VMA winner for “Best Video with a Social Message”.

The video, brought back below, is in part dedicated to his grandma and Sean had some sweet and concise words for the incredible woman who passed last year. Also in the speech, Sean expressed his gratitude for Kanye West for discovering him as well as appreciation for John Legend and the fans. It really felt off-the-cuff in that Sean didn’t have every word planned ahead and that’s what made the speech better.

Here’s the well-deserving winner of the VMA for Best Video with a Social Message:

Kanye debuts Yeezy Boost: Tan colorway

The VMAs have begun and fashion speaking, it’s Kanye already turning heads with the debut of another new colorway of the Yeezy Boost 350. The lows come in Tan and of course, it matches the ‘fit of Mr. & Mrs. West.

I think we’ll look back on this one like Britney and JT’s all-denim… except fondly look back, ha. Here they are below:

yeezy-boost-tan

Late Registration turns 10

Happy 10th birthday, Late Registration.

Can you believe that?!

August 30, 2005 saw the release of Kanye West’s critically acclaimed (Grammy winning Best Rap Album) sophomore album.

So naturally, today, just mere hours away from Kanye West receiving the VMA for the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, let’s take a behind the scenes, and personal, look back at Late Registration.

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I’ll start right away with some controversy. I guess it’s only fitting since controversy soon followed Kanye 10 years ago.

For me, Late Registration is my favorite Kanye album. More than popular choices like College Dropout and My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. (But really, can you really go wrong making a case for any Kanye album?)

What gives Late Registration the slightest of edges to me is what I think should be a determining factor for you: the sentimental value within your life that can continue to be measured over time.

You see, August 30, 2005 was the start of my senior year of high school. As it turned out, Late Registration dropped at the start of one of my most formative years and became the overbearing soundtrack of the end of summer, all of fall, parts of winter, and again in the spring around commencement.

High school senior privileges also allowed us to drive and park at school — a privilege in itself. So no doubt that first, second week of school I was blaring Late Registration at high volume with the windows down. If I got to school quick, it was “Touch The Sky” as I took the long route alongside the sidewalk to finally an open spot. If it took a little longer to get to school, “Gold Digger”. In traffic, it was “Drive Slow” (of course.) Before I picked up the homies, it was the 1,2 punch of the Wake Up Mr. West skit and “Heard Em Say” — the fitting anthem to start your day to and one that I had to run back today.

School’s out now, what do I fast forward to? Ye’s last verse on “Gone” obviously. Then the “Diamonds” OG version, with the sun setting sometimes, as I never fully tired of the rhymes and the sample since the summer.

There’s a song for every mood on here. The “Roses” x “Bring Me Down” x “Addiction” combo for nighttime crusing. “Hey Mama” for Mom. The world fully realized then, and it’s even easier to see now, how West’s versatility could be so impactful. With album #2, Kanye proving the first was no fluke quickly became a footnote. Kanye West, Superstar, was now universally recognized.

I made sure my high school knew it too, ha. I know I wasn’t the only one with Late Registration with the windows down, but I don’t care. Kanye’s mix of skill, sound, sophistication, and style made me feel like the coolest kid in the school.

Cheers to 10 years!

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You also clicked for some videos, didn’t ya? Well, thanks to an aggregate gathering from Team Kanye Daily, I relived a few gems that you might also be seeing for the first time.

First and foremost, the full episode of “Kanye West Makes an Album” on MTV2 that chronicled Mr. West and his complete cast of collaborators in the studio. Fascinating re-watch today for too many reasons to list.

Following suit, a look back at the Making Of and actual concert brilliantly dabbed Late Orchestration. This live album gave me new life and most notably, “Touch The Sky” featuring Lupe became my coming back to Chicago anthem that I would put on repeat whenever I got back home for college break. I could write another post on this alone but I’ll save that for another reflective moment.

Below that: a dope Late Registration samples infographic and the handful of music videos to enjoy before Kanye at the VMAs tonight!