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From A College Dropout To Jesus Is King The Evolution Of Kanye West


Kanye West is one of the most controversial rappers alive industry in the industry today. Since his debut in 2004 with his album ‘The College Dropout’, Kanye’s streak of global successes never seemed to end, and even today 15 years later, he’s far from finished. With 21 Grammies (and 69 nominations), tieing him in with Jay Z, the level of his success becomes apparent.

Born in Atlanta Georgia June 8, 1977, West grew up in Chicago Illinois with his mother after his parents separated. With a middle-classed background and a strong passion for music, West found himself producing for Roc-a-fella records, for artists such as Jay Z and Ludacris. This gave him the platform he needed to learn from best, and essentially find his voice within a multitude of genres.

After the release of his debut album, Kanye received critical acclaim from both critics and new-found fans alike. He even came as far as winning 3 Grammies and 9 nominations, the third-highest in a single night. It debuted at #2 on the US Billboard Hot 100 Chart and was certified double platinum by the RIAA. The debut being as successful as it was, paved the way for Kanye as an International industry giant.

Kanye’s impact created a standard for future artists, with his artistically versatile resume, giving us a completely different Kanye on each project he crafts. Each release is on an entirely different wavelength and in a stable of its own. While experimenting with edgy Rap-rock to alternative hip-hop, and currently even gospel on ‘Jesus is King’, Kanye’s albums have always given us a different flavor. Most notably, his collab EP with Kid Cudi, ‘KIDS SEE GHOSTS’, featured his most varied style with a psychedelic pop element, a remnant of ‘808’s And Heartbreaks’ electro-pop feel. The evolution of Kanye’s sound has given each listener an individual perspective of who Kanye is as an artist, which in itself is talent.

October 25th became the release date of Kanye’s 9th studio album, ‘Jesus Is King’, through GOOD Music in partnership with Def Jam Records. The Gospel themed album featured collaborations with artists such as Ty Dollar Sign and Kenny G and was produced by Benny Blanco, Pierre Bourne, and Ronny J to name a few. Aside from featuring one of the weirdest lineups, and probably the most orthodox production team, the album featured no cussing of any kind, further complimenting Kanye’s message. Kanye considers the album ‘an expression of the gospel’ and decided to alter the name from the original title, ‘Yahndi’, presumably as an ode to his inspiration for its lyrical content. Kanye set out for the project to be his next global success, constantly tweaking the album and altering the tracklist, evidence of his perfectionist work ethic.

Jesus is King reportedly debuted at #1 on the Billboard Chart, making it his 9th consecutive #1 album, tieing him in the Eminem and just one above the Beetles. The soul-filled, spiritually rich album has proved that Kanye is still breaking boundaries 14 years after his debut. Showing that his evolution has yet to come to a halt.


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