American rap icon Kanye West is credited to have revolutionized the hip hop industry. With each new album he has reinvented his sound and not once failed to hit the mark. No rapper in history has more Grammy wins than this genius of an artist.
However, West’s music is not the only reason for his massive popularity. He makes headlines with almost everything he does; from a small bizarre tweet to his marriage to socialite and actress Kim Kardashian.
When his blatant statements and controversial views become part of his music, they get even more attention. West has scored several number one albums and ranks among the bestselling and most awarded music artists of all time.
If you want to catch this outspoken and talented hip hop artist live in concert, grab your Kanye West tickets before they run out.
Kanye Omari West was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on June 8, 1977. He belonged to a middle class family and was raised in a humble environment. West was a creative child and wrote his first poem when he was only five years old. By the time he was in seventh grade, he was composing his own music.
As West grew older, he got more involved in the hip hop music scene of the city and at seventeen wrote the song ‘Green Eggs and Ham.’ He convinced his mother to allow him to start recording properly in a studio. Reluctant at first, his mother agreed to accompany him to a studio where West met his mentor and ‘The Godfather of Chicago Hip Hop,’ No I.D.
At twenty years of age, Kanye West quit his studies at the Chicago State University to pursue a career in the music industry. He started off by making music for local artists and soon got the opportunity to work as the producer for artists on Roc-A-Fella Records.
Although West was successful as a producer, his dream was always to become a rapper. The record companies however thought differently. For them, West did not have the gangsta image.
Kanye West got his breakthrough in 2002. While coming back from a recording session in Los Angeles, he met with an accident which left him with a broken jaw. He underwent reconstructive surgery in which his jaw was fixed with the help of a wire. During his stay at the hospital he wrote a song ‘Through the Wire.’ The single was recorded by him at the Record Plant Studios soon after he was discharged. It later appeared on West’s debut record in which he shared the experience of his near-fatal crash and other personal struggles and observations. While talking about the album, Kanye said in his own words that “all the better artists have expressed what they were going through. The album was my medicine.”
Released in 2004, Kanye West’s debut studio album ‘The College Dropout’ was an instant hit with the hip hop fans. It sold an impressive 441,000 copies within the first week of release. The record debuted at the second spot on the Billboard 200 and met a positive response from the critics as well. Two renowned publications namely Rolling Stone and Time magazine have ranked it among the greatest music albums of all-time. ‘The College Dropout’ also won West the Grammy for the Best Rap Album.
After the humungous success of his first studio record, Kanye West collaborated with American record producer Jon Brion for his next album ‘Late Registration.’ For the making of this record, West invested all the money he had made from ‘The College Dropout’ to hire a string orchestra. The album featured a number of appearances by guest artists such as Jay-Z, Adam Levine and Jamie Foxx. In the record, West touched upon a variety of political and personal issues, ranging from the blood diamond trade to racism and drug trafficking.
Kanye’s investment in the album paid off as ‘Late Registration’ turned out to be a big success. Besides topping the Billboard 200, it bagged a Grammy for Best Rap Album as well as a nomination in the category of Album of the Year.
The release date of West’s third record ‘Graduation’ coincided with rapper 50 Cent’s ‘Curtis.’ This generated a lot of buzz over the idea of a sales competition between the two. West’s ‘Graduation’ sales exceeded that of 50 Cent’s ‘Curtis’ by a huge margin, thereby bringing an end to the ‘gangsta rap’ dominance in mainstream hip hop. The album received double platinum certification by the RIAA.
Kanye West’s next studio album ‘808s & Heartbreak’ marked a shift from the kind of music he had made in previous albums. With a distorted electronic sound, it had West sing through an Auto-Tune vocal processor. The album’s theme was inspired by the loss of his mother and his break-up with fiancé Alexis Phifer. ‘808s & Heartbreak’ has since been cited as a strong influence in bringing about a change in hip hop music. It has served to inspire singers, rappers and producers to experiment and take creative risks in their new productions.
In 2010, West treated the fans with an album that was deemed as genius work by the music critics. Titled ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,’ the album was a combination of elements from West’s previous four records. It spawned hits such as ‘Runaway,’ ‘Monster’ and ‘All of the Lights’ and was certified platinum in the US.
For his sixth studio record ‘Yeezus,’ Kanye West collaborated with artists such as Acid House, Dancehall and Chicago Drill. The album received widespread commercial success and critical acclaim. Besides it earned two nominations at the 2014 Grammys.
‘The Life of Pablo’ topped the Billboard 200 upon its release in 2016. With this the rapper now has seven number one albums on the chart. Almost every song on the record features guest vocals by well-known music artists such as Rihanna, Chance the Rapper, Frank Ocean and Kid Cudi. Songs that stood out in the collection were ‘Real Friends,’ ‘Wolves,’ ‘Fade’ and the two-part ‘Father Stretch My Hand.’
Awards & Accolades
With over 21 million albums sold and 100 million digital downloads, Kanye West stands as one of the most acclaimed music artists of the 21st century. He has twice appeared on the 100 most influential people in the world list by Time magazine while three of his records have made it to the Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All-Time. Besides he has been included in numerous annual lists by Forbes.
Over the course of his career, the American rapper has won 92 awards out of the 380 nominations. Among the wins are 21 Grammys, five Billboard Music Awards, 16 BET Hip Hop Awards, 2 American Music Awards and several other honors.
Kanye West Tour Tickets
Whether it is his controversial statements, his relationship with reality star Kim Kardashian, his distinct fashion sense or his rift with other music artists, fans are always interested to know more about Kanye West.
Kanye West tour tickets are one of the most sought after items among hip hop and rap lovers. If you’re among the anxious fans looking forward to catching a glimpse of Kanye, make sure you have your tickets booked in time.