10 Revealing Quotes From Kanye West's Interview With Charlamagne Tha God

In the nearly two-hour long conversation, the duo discussed West’s breakdown or “breakthrough,” his relationship with JAY-Z, and his controversial views on President Donald Trump.

Last week, Kanye West teased an upcoming interview with radio/TV host Charlamagne Tha God. In the tweets, West referred to “The Breakfast Club” commentator as “the new Oprah” and even said that they should hold out on releasing the interview until they were offered $100 million. However, the two assumably had a change of heart since the interview premiered on the Chicago native's YouTube account Tuesday (May 1).

In the nearly two-hour long conversation, the duo discussed West’s breakdown or “breakthrough,” his relationship with JAY-Z, and his controversial views on President Donald Trump. While Charlamagne’s typical approach can be quite brash, he seemed to come from a place of concern and made West further explain his answers. He even called for West to check his “rich ni**a” privilege.

Here are the 10 most important takeaways from the interview.

--

Quote: “Ever since the Taylor Swift moment the connection hasn’t been the same with radio.”

Timestamp: 2:35

At the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, a brazen Kanye interrupted the songstress during her acceptance speech with the iconic line that Beyonce had the “greatest music video of all time.” This moment, while fleeting, has negatively plagued the rapper’s career concerning radio play time. To add to this, Kanye notes L.A. Reid’s departure from Universal Music for his declined radio success, citing that Reid had radio “on lock.” These two factors combined with the surmounting pressure of artists constantly putting out new music, the non-radio success of his album The Life Of Pablo, his wife Kim Kardashian’s robbery in Paris, and being on tour, led to mental, physical and emotional exhaustion.

Quote: “We’re good. I haven’t seen him, but I feel him.”

Timestamp: 18:00

While the fall out between Kanye and JAY-Z was a major moment in hip-hop, the artist claimed the two are in good standing despite talks of a face to face meeting. Kanye admitted he was hurt that his “big brother” and Beyonce didn’t show up to his wedding but has since moved forward after realizing the two were going through their own marital issues. He has faith that the Carters will one day reunite and seemingly dismissed any rumors that Beyonce is not a fan of his wife Kim Kardashian.

Quote: “One of the things that was incredible when I got out of the hospital was I had lost my confidence. You could see it, that’s why they said ‘sunken place’ and all this stuff.”

Timestamp: 32:45

Kanye admitted to having no empathy for people with low confidence prior to his breakdown but has since understood what it means to lack courage. This is a major admission for the rapper who once made a song titled “I Love Kanye." In the same breath, he addressed rumors about him being in the “sunken place” which he almost seemed to agree with by saying it was obvious he could be “molded” and “controlled.”

Quote: "I felt like when I came out and expressed what I said and what I felt that it was almost like a Clayton Bigsby moment when everybody’s head exploded. Like ‘My ‘Ye, George W. Bush doesn’t care about black people, this dude has to like diss Trump at all costs.’ So many people around me said don’t express your feelings...well what makes George Bush any more racist than Trump? My response is, well racism isn’t the deal breaker for me. If that was the case, I wouldn’t live in America."

Timestamp: 44:05

Charlamagne was quick to point out the issue with Kanye saying racism “isn’t a factor to him” because of his privilege but the latter stood by his statement. He said people expecting him to disapprove of Trump because of his blackness is a stigma he wants to change. The father-of-three added that he should be able to align himself with anyone, no matter how problematic that person may be.

Quote: “I’m not going to let myself off easy by saying ‘I met with Trump because I was going thru something.’ I’m not going to give the universe that, I’m going to face it.’ ...I would meet with him today to talk about Chicago.”

Timestamp: 1:06:19

Despite Kanye’s infamous 2016 meeting with then president-elect Trump, the rapper admitted he agreed to the meeting from a misguided origin. While he claims he wanted to help his beloved hometown of Chicago, he also said he had to face the fact that outside influences encouraged his decision to head to Trump Tower. He also offered that oftentimes black people in the public eye are not meant to be imperfect and he wants to be the face of imperfection.

Quote: “That was the moment I wanted to use Bitcoin, when I saw Harriet Tubman on a $20 bill...When you see all the slave movies it’s like why you gotta keep reminding us about slavery? Why don’t you put Michael Jordan on a $20 bill.”

Timestamp: 37:24

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, under Obama’s Administration, proposed to put Harriet Tubman on a $20 bill. Design of the currency was projected to be revealed in 2020 and pushed into circulation. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, under Trump’s Administration, hasn’t given the final say, according to CNN.

Quote: “Obama came to me before he ran for office and he met with me and my mother to let me know he was going to run for office, because I am his favorite artist of all time, because I am the greatest artist of all time. It makes sense, he got good taste…then when I went on stage, it would’ve been good if this video didn’t get out, but you saw the video [when he called Kanye a jacka**]. He never called me to apologize. The same person that sat down with me and my mom, I think should’ve communicated to me directly.”

Timestamp: 54:38

Kanye received a lot of heat from everyone, including former President Obama after the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards fiasco. In a behind the scenes video of Obama preparing for an interview, he called Kanye a “jacka**,” and it wasn't his last time calling him out of his name. Obama stood by his statement in an interview with The Atlantic calling Ye a “jacka**,” but softened the blow with a praise to Kanye’s talents.

Quote: “It’s not that I was particularly fighting for Beyonce’s video. It was every time an award show has ever done that, just fu**ing with artists. We are HSP, highly sensitive people. Artists, that’s what you love about us. So you’re going to line up a whole bunch of artists, and put us in some bum a** suits? This idea from 200 years ago, we dressed like we 200 years ago, lined up trying to wait to get a gold statue? And you’re going to make us feel like s**t. It’s five of us and four of us got to the restaurant with our friends and be like ‘man we ain’t win nothing.’ F**k that.”

Timestamp: 58:38

The Grammy’s has a history of getting things wrong, the most recent is arguably SZA being the most nominated female artist but walked away that night empty-handed, or when Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN didn’t win Album of the Year, and later won a Pulitzer Prize.

Quote: “Because our cape got taken away when we was three years old. We’re broken. We’re in the simulation. We want our BMW, we want our house, we want to pay all our money for the house. We want to buy this dress for our wife. We want to put our kids in school. We want this championship trophy. We want this jewelry. We want all these different things…I can’t talk somebody out of wearing Gucci…when I see branding I see insecurity and I see people buying security, buying it back through a brand.”

Timestamp: 1:21:22

Yeezy has repped brands like Polo, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Maison Martin Margiela either through song lyrics or flexing on the red carpet. His childhood friend, rapper GLC, speculated in a 2017 interview with The Chicago Morning Takeover that Ye needs approval from the white community, according to HipHopDX, because of the nature of being married to a white woman. Charlamagne asked why people want the validation that comes with buying luxury brand items, or the approval of “white or rich people,” and Kanye seemed to have grown from the bondage of seeking approval. He attributed this to his “breakthrough.”

Quote: “The fact that he won, it proves something. It proved that anything is possible in America. I’m not talking about what he’s done since he’s been in office, but the fact that he was able to do it … I felt the nonconventional … when I see an outsider infiltrate, I connect with that.”

Timestamp: 1:36:25

Kanye never sticks to the script and he never fits in, but rather molds, bends or breaks spaces he occupies. In the interview, he described that’s what he connects with as it pertains to Trump. It’s not the policies, but the fact that someone without any political experience or background is able to fill up that space.

From the Web

More on Vibe

CIRCA 1980: Photo of Bill Withers
David Corio/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Bill Withers' Greatest Hits: Remixed, Sampled And Covered

The recent loss of legends in jazz, soul and classical music have saddened the music industry and reminded us of their touching gifts to music. The passing of Manu Dibango, Krzysztof Penderecki, Ellis Marsalis Jr., Bucky Pizzarelli and Alan Merrill brought endless tributes from peers and fans with the recent loss of soul singer-songwriter Bill Withers doing the same.

With a mirage of hits, the iconic songwriter left his mark on music with the release of his debut album Just As I Am in 1971. "Ain't No Sunshine" put a spotlight on his songwriting while 1977's "Lovely Day" reminded the industry of his signature vocals. Withers released eight studio albums, one live album and garnered three Grammys for his powerful songs that gave hope and love to fans to this day.

Hip-hop and R&B have gained the most from Withers as his music went on to inspire records like "No Diggity" by BLACKStreet, "Roses" by Kanye West and other songs from UGK, Dr. Dre, Jill Scott and more.

Take a look at some of Withers' finest tunes covered, remixed and sampled below.

__

8. “Lovely Day” | Menagerie (1977)

Sampled On: T.W.D.Y., “Player’s Holiday” | Derty Werk (1999) LunchMoneyLewis - “It's Gonna Be A Lovely Day” feat. Aminè | Pets 2 Soundtrack (2019) Swizz Beatz - “Take A Picture” |One Man Band (2007)

Standout: T.W.D.Y., “Player’s Holiday” | Derty Werk (1999)

Short for "The Whole Damn Yay," the group used Withers' sample while throwing a splash of The Bay's laid back flavor. With cameos from future legends like E-40 and Ray Luv, the single already embodied the best of R&B and hip-hop with guest verses from Too Short, Mac Mall and Otis & Shug. The mimosas and yacht are also a great touch.

Covered By: Jill Scott, The Original Jill Scott from the Vault Vol. 1 (2011) Alt-J, This Is All Yours (2014) Robert Glasper Experiment, Black Radio 2 (2013) Kirk Franklin, The Nu Nation Project (1998)

Standout: Kirk Franklin, The Nu Nation Project (1998)

Who was going to beat a chorus singing to the lordt? Franklin's take on the classic gives us stirring gospel and appreciation for Withers and God. There are plenty of covers that have lifted the same vocals as Withers, but the ones listed have put their unique spin on the track.

7. “Ain't No Sunshine” | Just As I Am (1971)

Sampled On: DMX - “No Sunshine” | Exit Wounds Soundtrack (2001) Lil B - “Up And Down” | Based Jam (2012) 2Pac- "Soulja's Story" |  2Pacalypse Now (1991)

Standout: DMX - “No Sunshine” | Exit Wounds Soundtrack (2001)

"No Sunshine" served as the only single from DMX's film alongside Steven Seagal, which gave everyone the perfect backdrop to the movie and X's intricate storytelling. Both the original and flipped version points out the dark elements of our lives. Withers penned the song after watching the film 1962 movie Days of Wine and Roses, he pondered over the toxicity in his life. "Sometimes you miss things that weren't particularly good for you," he said in 2004 to SongFacts. "It's just something that crossed my mind from watching that movie, and probably something else that happened in my life that I'm not aware of."

Covered By: Soul For Real | Candy Rain (1994) Michael Jackson | Got to Be There (1972) The Boris Gardiner Happening | Is What's Happening (1973) The Temptations | Solid Rock (1972)

Standout: Michael Jackson | Got to Be There (1972)

At 14, the future King of Pop gave a riveting cover of Withers' hit for his debut album, Got To Be There. From his vocal control throughout the track to the instrumentation, his cover takes the song to another level of heartbreak.

6. "Grandma's Hands” | Just As I Am (1971)

Sampled On: BLACKstreet - “No Diggity” feat. Dr. Dre and Queen Pen | Another Level (1996) Big K.R.I.T. - “I Gotta Stay” | K.R.I.T. Wuz Here (2010) Brother Ali - “Waheedah's Hands” | Champion (2004)

Standout: BLACKstreet - “No Diggity” feat. Dr. Dre and Queen Pen | Another Level (1996)

R&B heads are well aware of BLACKstreet's neverending ballads and the genius of Teddy Riley. But the pivot of their sound for their sophomore album Another Level was due to Withers and the William “Stylez” Stewart. Speaking to Fact Mag in 2017, the creator of New Jack Swing gave credit to Stylez for bringing him the sample of "Grandma's Hands."

“If he hadn’t played that sample for me, there would never be a ‘No Diggity’ And if he didn’t write it according to the melody I gave him so it would sound that way because I wanted it to sound funky,” he said. “I wanted it to be appealing to everyone, but mostly to women. I wanted every woman to feel like they were the ‘No Diggity’ girl and that song was about them and it came across. And now, still, today, that song plays and people are on that dancefloor.”

Covered By: Gil Scott-Heron, Reflections (1981) Merry Clayton, Merry Clayton (1971) Barbra Streisand, Butterfly (1974)

Standout: Gil Scott-Heron, Reflections (1981)

Gil Scott-Heron's version of the soul classic reminded us of his versatile talents. From spoken word to his vocal abilities, the Godfather of rap music always came through with his own sound and style. Reflections was one of four albums the late artist dropped in the 80s with critics looking to it as one of his finest projects. Other cuts from the album included "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" and "B Love."

5. "Use Me" | Still Bill (1972)

Sampled On: Kendrick Lamar - “Sing About Me, I'm Dying Of Thirst"  | Good kid, Maad City (2012) J. Cole- "Dollar And A Dream II" | The Warm-Up (2009) Leela James - “So Good" | Fall For You (2014) UGK - "Use Me Up" | The Southern Way (1992)

Standout: Kendrick Lamar - “Sing About Me, I'm Dying Of Thirst"  | Good kid, Maad City (2012)

Lamar's take on "Use Me" blended right into the themes of his debut album, Good kid, Maad City allowing the artist to create another world on the project. To make things even better, Lamar also sampled Al Green's "I'm Glad You're Mine" for the track.

Covered By: Grace Jones, Indigo Nights, Live (2008) Mick Jagger feat. Lenny Kravitz, Wandering Spirit  (2004) Issac Hayes, Dr. Dolittle Soundtrack (1998)

Standout: Mick Jagger feat. Lenny Kravitz, Wandering Spirit (2004)

On his third solo album, Jagger linked with Rick Rubin to test his creative energy, allowing him to work with Lenny Kravitz on their version of "Use Me." Colliding worlds was one thing but to hear Kravitz's vocals come in on the bridge, set the track apart from the rest.

4. “Kissing My Love” | Still Bill (1972)

Sampled On: J. Cole - “The Cut Off" featuring kiLL Edward  | KOD (2018) Dr. Dre - "Let Me Ride" featuring Snoop Dogg, RC and Jewell | The Chronic (1992) Masta Ace- "Movin On" | Take A Look Around (1990) Master P- "Bastard Child" | The Ghettos Tryin To Kill Me! | 1994

Standout: Dr. Dre - "Let Me Ride" featuring Snoop Dogg, RC and Jewell | The Chronic (1992)

"Kissing My Love" is one of most sampled from Withers catalog, thanks to its feverish drums. It's also why it fits into Dr. Dre's single and the G-funk era.

3. Grover Washington's “Just The Two of Us” featuring Bill Withers | Winelight (1981)

Sampled/Covered On:  Will Smith - “Just The Two of Us” | Big Willie Style (1997) Eminem- "Just The Two of Us" | Slim Shady EP (1997) Keri Hilson- "Pretty Girl Rock" | No Boys Allowed (2010)

Standout: Will Smith - “Just The Two of Us” | Big Willie Style (1997)

Touching and soulful, Smith's dedication to his eldest son Trey is just too cute for words.

2. “Let It Be” | Just As I Am  (1967)

The Original: The Beatles - “Let It Be” | Let It Be (1968)

"Let It Be" is a pretty special record. Aretha Franklin recorded a version a year before the release of The Beatles' version and Withers gave his take on the record in the 70s. Slightly faster, his upbeat take on "Let It Be" just hits different.

1. “Rosie” | Menagerie Re-Issue (1977)

Sampled On: Kanye West - “Roses” |  Late Registration (2005)

As the somber part of Late Registration, "Roses" brings us into Kanye's world where he contemplates the mortality of a loved one. It's a sentimental take on the sample and one of the artist's most underrated songs. It's also a hidden gem for Withers as it isn't featured on Menagerie's LP. It was added as a bonus track on

Enjoy the jams in playlist form below.

Continue Reading
YouTube

Remain Calm: 5 Ways To Curve Negative Effects Of Coronavirus Isolation

Self-isolation during the coronavirus outbreak seems to be best practice in keeping our families and peers safe but it's also a shift in our normal social behavior. As millions of families around the country get adjusted to self-isolation, the state of our mental health and how our bodies react to the practice are changing by the day, especially lower-income and marginalized groups.

Speaking with Wired, John Vincent, a clinical psychologist at the University of Houston, shared how apathetic behavior can rise to the forefront, making space for anxiety and depression.

“People start getting lethargic when they don’t have positive inputs into their small worlds,” Vincent says. “We can expect depression to kick in, and depression and anxiety are kissing cousins.”

But the biggest reason behind the uneasiness isn't the self-isolation but just how long it will last. Details of COVID-19 are changing by the day with the most cases now coming out of New York. Yet, there's still little to no information on what happens next.

“Open, transparent, consistent communication is the most important thing governments and organizations can do: Make sure people understand why they are being quarantined first and foremost, how long it is expected to last,” Samantha Brooks of King’s College London told the outlet. “A huge factor in the negative psychological impact seems to be confusion about what's going on, not having clear guidelines, or getting different messages from different organizations.”

Uncertainty hitting low income and marginalized groups is also a problem within itself. As virtual parties and celebrities opening up on social media happen on a daily, there are people who might not access fun distractions on the web.

“Some people have posited technology as a means of connecting people, but lower-income groups might not even have FaceTime or Skype or minutes on their phone,” Thomas Cudjoe, a geriatrician researching the intersection of social connections and aging at Johns Hopkins University says. “People take that for granted, using their devices can be a strain on people’s incomes.”

To make self-isolation less than a bore or a daunting task, experts suggest creating a schedule to dictate control in your home.

1. Work It Out

Gyms are closed, but your home can be transformed into a personal training center. Use heavy bags for weights and if you can, create a playlist of workouts on YouTube. For those who have memberships for Blink or Peloton, the platforms have streamed their workouts on apps.

2. Mindful Meditation

Meditation isn't about dumping your thoughts, it's about staying aware and mindful. AQUA has developed online that leverages the power of "Mindful Meditation and Mobility Movements" for flexibility and fluidity in the body. Classes are free of charge but feel free to donate.

3. Take It Back To High School

Give your friends a call or indulge in a FaceTime party. Feel free to use the Wifi in your home to reduce the amount of data used on your phone. Lala Anthony held a too-cute FT birthday party for writer Kiyonna Anthony with a 70s theme. You can also find creative ways to hop on the phone with friends and family instead of constantly chatting about 'rona.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

We made the best out of our quarantine situation🎉‼️FACETIME 70s Party💃🏽🎉HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY NIECE @kiyonnathewriter ❤️❤️💃🏽💃🏽SHOUT OUT TO ALL MY ARIES ♈️ MAKE THE BEST OF IT!!!😘

A post shared by ℒᎯ ℒᎯ (@lala) on Mar 23, 2020 at 7:14pm PDT

4. Start A Journal

Journals just aren't for kids. The practice not only gives you something to do, but it fuels creativity and a new level of self-awareness. Former First Lady Michelle Obama recently developed Becoming: A Guided Journal for Discovering Your Voice, with over 150 inspiring questions and quotes that connect to key themes in her memoir. The journal will also help bring readers to terms with the importance of family and personal reflections as well as the goals they'd like to make a reality.

5. Have a Dance Party or Enjoy Lo-Fi Beats To Quarantine To

If you don't have data or battery power to watch a virtual DJ party, make your own. If you have to pull out your record player, do it! You can also hop on your favorite streaming service and create a playlist all your own.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

From Teen Sensation To Vocal Bible: Brandy's 15 Best Songs

September 27, 2019 marked the 25th anniversary of the multiplatinum self-titled debut album by one of R&B’s greatest voices, Brandy Rayana Norwood, or simply Brandy. She was already well on her way to stardom prior to her debut as a background vocalist for Immature and one of the stars of the short-lived ABC series, Thea. However, it was the album Brandy that set her on the path to tremendous success.

Since officially bursting onto the scene in 1994 sporting her well-known braided crown of glory, she has been a force to be reckoned with. She was handpicked by her idol, the late Whitney Houston, to portray the role of the first Black Cinderella in the 1997 film Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella. Her show Moesha was one of the longest-running black sitcoms. Brandy was also a CoverGirl in 1999 and became a friend of Barbie that same year when Mattel released the Brandy Doll. In music, she’s released six studio albums, sold more than 40 million records worldwide, headlined three world tours, and won more than 30 awards including seven Billboard Music Awards, a Grammy and the Soul Train Lady of Soul Award. Brandy deserves her flowers.

Let’s check out the top 15 songs that helped solidify Brandy as your favorite singer’s favorite singer (just ask Solange) and earned her the title of the “Vocal Bible.”

Continue Reading

Top Stories