19 Best Quotes From Kanye West In Interview Magazine

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Photo By: Steven Klein

“The joke that I’ve actually played on everyone is that the entire time, I’ve actually just been a fine artist. I just make sonic paintings, and these sonic paintings have led me to become whatever people think of when you say ‘Kanye West.’”

“It’s a dream, and I think the controversy comes from the fact that I don’t think most people are comfortable with their own dreams, so it’s hard for them to be comfortable with other people’s dreams.”

“My mission is very different from Tupac’s—and I’m not Tupac. But I think that when I compare myself to Steve Jobs, Walt Disney, Howard Hughes, or whoever, it’s because I’m trying to give people a little bit of context to the possibilities that are in front of me, as opposed to putting me in the rap category that the Grammys has put me in. In no way do I want to be the next any one of them. But I am the first me. So I only mention those other names to try to give people a little bit of context.”

“So if we take it back to the days of what the media calls ‘meltdowns’—which I don’t call meltdowns at all, I call them ‘turn-ups’—at things like the MTV Video Music Awards …”

“You know, the sketchbook, the train of my ideas, is named after her. It’s called Donda. And it’s amazing because my grandfather, who just passed away this year, was named Portwood, and he had the sensibility, as a Southern black man out of Oklahoma, to name his daughter Donda. And then Donda had the sensibility to name her son Kanye. How futuristic and worldly are both of those names?”

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“Well, I’ve got my astronaut family. You know, becoming famous is like being catapulted into space—sometimes without a space suit.”

“As a celebrity, I have an opportunity to make a living at being the spokesperson for the third or fourth rendition of a thought-promoting something that has already been proven. The problem is that I like to be the inventor—I’m the person who works on the concept, who invents new thoughts, who brings new ideas into the universe. I’m not the guy who works on selling the idea—I’m not Vanna White for the new Hyundai.”

“The first company that has really given me a shot is Adidas. They did the deal … I mean, Damon Dash did the deal, at the end of the day. He signed Kanye West 12 years ago. What does that mean now? What does that mean to music?”

“My mission is about what I want to create. It’s for people, for humanity. It’s about things that can make the world better. I’m not saying that I’m going to make a better world; I’m just saying that I will provide some things that will help, and my glass ceiling that I’m facing is based on my color.”

“I mean, there have definitely been moments where I’ve forgotten that I was black—and I don’t want people to take that as, “Oh, he sold out.” I mean, like, when I decided to wear tight jeans. At that moment, I forgot that I was supposed to wear baggy jeans because I’m black. Or when I’ve said certain things on TV and I’ve forgotten that I wasn’t supposed to say them because I’m black—that I was supposed to stay in line and be neutral.”

“People can give you advice … I met with Deepak Chopra, right? I was supposed to go back the next day, but I told my girlfriend that I wasn’t going to go. Because you know what gets me calm, baby? Success. And I went in and finished my Adidas deal instead. I felt so Zen-ed out by that.”

“So I hope that there are people out there laughing. Laugh loud, please. Laugh until your lungs give out because I will have the last laugh.”