Subscribe to our newsletter

Kanye West explains how controversial TMZ slavery interview influenced new album 'Ye'


Kanye West has explained how his controversial TMZ interview about slavery forced him to re-write large sections of his new album Ye. 

In the much-debated interview, Kanye suggests that slavery was “a choice” when decided to visit to TMZ Live, also touching on a number of topics but predominantly spent most of his time talking about Donald Trump.

The rapper then said the following on the topic of slavery:  “When you hear about slavery for 400 years… For 400 years? That sounds like a choice,” Kanye remarked. “You were there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all. It’s like we’re mentally imprisoned.”

“It’s like we’re mentally imprisoned. I like the word ‘imprisoned’ because slavery goes too directly to the idea of blacks … so prison is something that unites us as one race. Blacks and whites being one race. That we’re the human race.”

It as those comments that sparked a huge backlash, even industry colleague described West’s words both “ignorant” and “harmful”. 

Now, having dropped his new record, Kanye has explained how that interview impacted his created process, he said: “I completely re-did the album after TMZ,” he said while talking to radio personality Big Boy. “We just sat there and really honed in on the words because now it’s all headlines, it’s like every bar can be used… you know, there’s even bars we had about that… I took a bar off the album. It was just too sensitive. It was about that topic. And I just let go. ‘I’m gonna just chill right now, let’s just keep making some music.’

“You know, I feel like, as a son, and as a family member of the world … that’s the reason why the world won’t let me go because I’m just a family member. They might disagree with me, but I’m family. I’ve been here for 15 years, 18 years, and you know, I feel like the best thing I could do is sit there, and go in that studio, and keep chopping that thing that only I know how to do and only me and my crew know how to do.”

Watch the full interview, here: