41 of Kanye West’s Best Songs
Since making his official rap debut in 2002, with a feature on Jay-Z's Blueprint 2 cut "The Bounce," Kanye West has gone from underdog to grand champ, becoming one of hip-hop's greatest success stories. Silencing all critics with his game-changing debut album, The College Dropout, the Chicago native has captivated the rap world time and time again, whether with his music or bold statements, such as the infamous "George Bush doesn't care about Black people" comment he made while on live TV during a Hurricane Katrina telethon in 2015.
Equally outspoken as he is talented, antics like bum-rushing the stage during pop star Taylor Swift's acceptance speech at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards to praise Beyoncé have made him a polarizing figure. Yet the headline-grabbing moments have done little to diminish his popularity within the hip-hop community, with albums like Late Registration, 808s & Heartbreak, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy and Yeezus being hailed as modern-day classics. However, the past few years have been particularly turbulent for Kanye West, with the status of his mental health dominating headlines and his political stances given even his most devoted supporters cause to pause.
Hate him or love him, Kanye West continues to command the attention of the music world and beyond, with his recently released solo album, Ye, as well as Kids See Ghosts, his collaborative album with Kid Cudi. Critics and fans alike have had both LPs in heavy rotation with the former being released just last week and the latter arriving today, making them among the most buzzworthy albums of 2018. With all that the G.O.O.D. Music mastermind has on his plate, as well as his contributions to hip-hop, it's only right that we wish Kanye West happy birthday, as the production and rap god turns 41 years old today (June 8).
In celebration of Yeezy's 41st birthday, XXL highlights 41 of the Louis Vuitton Don's greatest hits and fan favorites.