For a while there, Kanye West was the least popular man on Earth.
But his career didn't start off that way. In fact, if you told Crossfade that the fresh-faced and manic MC who released that crazy-ass "Jesus Walks" single would one day be the bonafide sultan of swag, we would have made our skeptical face, which consists of crossed-eyes and our tongue hanging limp from the left side of our mouth.
His debut album, The College Dropout, had critics raving about hip-hop's own face, finally refreshed with sensitivity and emotion. Everything Kanye has done since, though, has confirmed that rap's mug looks less like a baby's and more like a Roman Emperor sick with power.
The outlandishly cocky statements, the repeat award show crashings ... Kanye West is a bonafide, self-obsessed anti-hero and his latest grab for attention -- a tribute to the recently deceased Amy Winehouse -- promises to be especially annoying.
Winehouse's "Back to Black" was one of two big singles -- alongside breakout hit "Rehab" -- that catapulted the ill-fated R&B-slash-soul vocalist to the top. The song and its accompanying video capture her aesthetic mission with utmost accuracy: black and white with cigarette smoke lingering and everyone dressed to the nines. To be frank, it's the flyest funeral procession maybe ever.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
West has been telling the world that on his redux of Winehouse's now-classic track he'll be "singing from the heart -- with synthesizers." Hey, let's read that again: singing from the heart -- with synthesizers. Oh, great, Ye! Something new and different! And this time you might get a few extra Twitter hash tags for piggybacking on Amy Winehouse's death.