Kanye West

Kanye West

Kanye West (pronounced CON-yay) (born June 8, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia) is an American music producer and rapper from Chicago, Illinois.

Previously best known for producing hit singles for Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, and Ludacris, Kanye himself worked on a solo album for a long period of time, having the release pushed back time and time again. A car crash in October 2002 left his jaw fractured in three places. With his mouth still wired shut and only weeks after having an encounter with death, Kanye West began recording "Through The Wire," reliving his near-fatal accident. "Through The Wire", which sampled Chaka Khan's classic track "Through The Fire", would eventually become his lead single off The College Dropout in 2004, released on Roc-a-Fella Records. The album received almost universal acclaim for its balance of mainstream commercial appeal and conscious (at times verging on Afrocentric) lyrics, along with Kanye's signature style of taking samples from sped-up classic soul and R&B tracks.

The College Dropout reached #1 on Billboard magazine's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Album Chart, and reached #2 on the Billboard 200 - it also peaked at #12 on the UK album chart, where it spent several months in the Top 20 during 2004. "Through The Wire" peaked at #15 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart, and its successor "All Falls Down", which features R&B singer Syleena Johnson, peaked at #7. The third single from the album, the inspirational quasi-epic "Jesus Walks" peaked at #11 on the Hot 100, while a fourth extract, "The New Workout Plan", made a minor impression on the US R&B / Hip-Hop charts (see list of Billboard chart positions below).

In the UK, "Through The Wire" peaked at #9 on the official singles sales chart, "All Falls Down" peaked at #10, and "Jesus Walks" peaked at #16. "Jesus Walks" as of late has been subject for controversy, as the fact that the song was bought from Indianapolis-based MC Rhymefest and re-recorded has infuriated some hip-hop fans who decry such practices. He has also collaborated with Twista on a couple of his songs, such as "Overnight Celebrity" and "Slow Jamz" (also featuring Jamie Foxx) which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart. He also appears on Brandy's single, "Talk About Our Love". His other collaborations with other artists include Dilated Peoples, Mariah Carey and John Legend.

In 2004, Kanye West received ten Grammy Award nominations, making him the most nominated artist of 2004. He received two nominations in the Album of the Year category, one for The College Dropout, and one for his work on Alicia Keys's album The Diary of Alicia Keys. His work with pop icon Janet Jackson also earned a nomination for her single I Want You, produced by West, was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.

At the 47th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony held on February 13, 2005, his album The College Dropout won for Best Rap Album; and his single "Jesus Walks" won for Best Rap Song. Somewhat surprisingly, he did not go home with the Best New Artist Grammy (which instead went to Maroon 5); this snub was a repeat of the shut-out he received at the 2004 American Music Awards, where he lost to Gretchen Wilson.


His complete Grammy nominations included:

  • Album of the Year for The Diary Of Alicia Keys (as a producer)
  • Album of the Year for The College Dropout
  • Song of the Year for Jesus Walks
  • Best New Artist
  • Best R&B Song for You Don't Know My Name (as a songwriter)
  • Best Rap Solo Performance for Through The Wire
  • Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for All Falls Down
  • Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for Slow Jamz
  • Best Rap Song for Jesus Walks
  • Best Rap Album for The College Dropout

Plus Janet Jackson's "I Want You" produced by West nominated in Best Female Recording (R&B).

Billboard Chart positions, by song

  • All Falls Down, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #4
  • All Falls Down, Hot Rap Tracks, #2
  • All Falls Down, Rhythmic Top 40, #7
  • All Falls Down, Hot 100, #7
  • All Falls Down, Top 40 Mainstream, #22
  • All Falls Down, Top 40 Tracks, #12
  • Jesus Walks, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #2
  • Jesus Walks, Hot Rap Tracks, #3
  • Jesus Walks, Rhythmic Top 40, #16
  • Jesus Walks, Hot 100, #11
  • Through the Wire, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #8
  • Through the Wire, Hot Rap Tracks, #4
  • Through the Wire, Rhythmic Top 40, #10
  • Through the Wire, Hot 100, #15
  • Through the Wire, Top 40 Mainstream, #32
  • Through the Wire, Top 40 Tracks, #25
  • The New Workout Plan, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #60

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Plus Janet Jackson's "I Want You" produced by West nominated in Best Female Recording (R&B). For a full discography, see The Who discography..
His complete Grammy nominations included:. In September of 2002, Q magazine named The Who as one of the "50 Bands To See Before You Die". At the 47th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony held on February 13, 2005, his album The College Dropout won for Best Rap Album; and his single "Jesus Walks" won for Best Rap Song. Somewhat surprisingly, he did not go home with the Best New Artist Grammy (which instead went to Maroon 5); this snub was a repeat of the shut-out he received at the 2004 American Music Awards, where he lost to Gretchen Wilson. In 2004 The Who released two new songs, and it is expected that in the spring of 2005 they will release their first new album in 22 years. His work with pop icon Janet Jackson also earned a nomination for her single I Want You, produced by West, was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. After a brief delay, the tour commenced with bassist Pino Palladino filling in for Entwistle.

He received two nominations in the Album of the Year category, one for The College Dropout, and one for his work on Alicia Keys's album The Diary of Alicia Keys. A coroner's investigation revealed that while not technically an overdose, a modest amount of cocaine in his system was a contributing factor in a fatal heart attack, the result of years of heart trouble caused or aggravated by regular cocaine use. In 2004, Kanye West received ten Grammy Award nominations, making him the most nominated artist of 2004. Just before the outset of a tour in the summer of 2002, John Entwistle was found dead in his room at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. His other collaborations with other artists include Dilated Peoples, Mariah Carey and John Legend. By this time Zak Starkey was their regular drummer. He also appears on Brandy's single, "Talk About Our Love". In 1996 they staged successful multi-media performances of Quadrophenia featuring a narrator and guest singers.

He has also collaborated with Twista on a couple of his songs, such as "Overnight Celebrity" and "Slow Jamz" (also featuring Jamie Foxx) which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart. Their best-known reunion tour occurred in 1989 and emphasized Tommy. "Jesus Walks" as of late has been subject for controversy, as the fact that the song was bought from Indianapolis-based MC Rhymefest and re-recorded has infuriated some hip-hop fans who decry such practices. Thereafter they stopped recording new material and settled into intermittent forays on the "nostalgia tour circuit", as Townshend focused on solo projects such as The Iron Man and Psychoderelict, a forerunner to the eventual release of the radio work Lifehouse. In the UK, "Through The Wire" peaked at #9 on the official singles sales chart, "All Falls Down" peaked at #10, and "Jesus Walks" peaked at #16. In 1982 they also embarked on the first in a series of farewell tours. The third single from the album, the inspirational quasi-epic "Jesus Walks" peaked at #11 on the Hot 100, while a fourth extract, "The New Workout Plan", made a minor impression on the US R&B / Hip-Hop charts (see list of Billboard chart positions below). The band released two more studio albums with Jones as their drummer, Face Dances (1981) and It's Hard (1982).

"Through The Wire" peaked at #15 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart, and its successor "All Falls Down", which features R&B singer Syleena Johnson, peaked at #7. Band members were not told of the deaths until after the show because civic authorities feared more crowd control problems if the concert were cancelled, and the band members were reportedly devastated when they found out about it. The College Dropout reached #1 on Billboard magazine's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Album Chart, and reached #2 on the Billboard 200 - it also peaked at #12 on the UK album chart, where it spent several months in the Top 20 during 2004. The following year was also traumatic for the band: on December 3, 1979 in Cincinnati, Ohio, a stampede for seats at Riverfront Coliseum at the start of a Who concert killed eleven fans. The album received almost universal acclaim for its balance of mainstream commercial appeal and conscious (at times verging on Afrocentric) lyrics, along with Kanye's signature style of taking samples from sped-up classic soul and R&B tracks. Kenny Jones, of The Small Faces and The Faces, joined the band as his replacement. "Through The Wire", which sampled Chaka Khan's classic track "Through The Fire", would eventually become his lead single off The College Dropout in 2004, released on Roc-a-Fella Records. The release of the album was overshadowed by the accidental drug overdose death of Keith Moon shortly afterward.

With his mouth still wired shut and only weeks after having an encounter with death, Kanye West began recording "Through The Wire," reliving his near-fatal accident. In 1978 the band released Who Are You, a move away from epic rock opera and towards a more radio-friendly sound, though it did contain one song from a never-completed Rock opera by John Entwistle. A car crash in October 2002 left his jaw fractured in three places. The band's later albums contained songs of more personal content for Townshend, and he eventually transferred this personal style to his solo albums, as seen on the album Empty Glass. Previously best known for producing hit singles for Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, and Ludacris, Kanye himself worked on a solo album for a long period of time, having the release pushed back time and time again. Who's Next was followed by a second Rock opera called Quadrophenia (1973), with a story line based on the clashes between Mods and Rockers in the early 1960s, particularly the riots between the two factions at Brighton. Kanye West (pronounced CON-yay) (born June 8, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia) is an American music producer and rapper from Chicago, Illinois. Although the intended album was not released until reconstructed as a radio play for the BBC in 2000, the Who included many of the project's best songs in Who's Next (1971), which would become their most successful album.

The New Workout Plan, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #60. Townshend then attempted an even more ambitious concept album cum Performance Art project called Lifehouse. Through the Wire, Top 40 Tracks, #25. Around this time the spiritual teachings of Meher Baba began to influence Peter Townshend's songwriting, and he is credited as 'Avatar' on the Tommy album. Through the Wire, Top 40 Mainstream, #32. Those early efforts were followed by Tommy (1969), their first complete Rock opera and the first commercially successful one by any artist. Through the Wire, Hot 100, #15. The Who Sell Out also included a track from a never-completed Rock opera.

Through the Wire, Rhythmic Top 40, #10. The first sign of this ambition came in their album A Quick One (1966), which included the story-telling medley "A Quick One, While He's Away", which they later refered to as a "mini opera". A Quick One was followed by The Who Sell Out (1967), a concept album that played like an offshore radio station, complete with jingles and commercials. Through the Wire, Hot Rap Tracks, #4. Townshend also wanted to treat the Who's albums as unified works, rather than collections of unconnected songs. Through the Wire, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #8. Although they had great success as a singles band, the Who, or more properly their leader Townshend, had their sights set higher, and over the years their music became more complex and their lyrics more provocative and involving. Jesus Walks, Hot 100, #11. Another early favorite, showing Townshend's way with words, was the 1966 single "Substitute", which included the line, "I was born with a plastic spoon in my mouth." The 1967 hit single "Pictures Of Lily", a tribute to masturbation, was possibly one of the most accomplished of all European contributions to psychedelic music.

Jesus Walks, Rhythmic Top 40, #16. The album included such mod anthems as "The Kids are Alright" and the title track "My Generation", which contained the famous line, "Hope I die before I get old". Jesus Walks, Hot Rap Tracks, #3. The Who's first hit was the 1965 Kinks-like single "I Can't Explain", and they vaulted to fame with their My Generation album that same year. Jesus Walks, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #2. Townshend was at the center of the band's tensions, as he strove to write challenging and thoughtful music, while Daltrey preferred energetic and macho material (Daltrey would occasionally refuse to sing a Townshend composition and Townshend would thus sing it himself), while Moon was a fan of American surf music. All Falls Down, Top 40 Tracks, #12. The band soon crystallized around Townshend as the primary songwriter (though Entwistle would also make the occasional contribution).

All Falls Down, Top 40 Mainstream, #22. One story also claims that Townshend's hearing loss was the result of standing too close to an explosive Moon had placed in his drum kit and detonated at the conclusion of a performance on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour variety show in 1967. All Falls Down, Hot 100, #7. Townshend's partial deafness is well documented; popular legend has it that the members of the band suffered permanent hearing loss and tinnitus from their loud concerts, though Townshend maintains that the true cause was listening to the music at high volume through headphones. All Falls Down, Rhythmic Top 40, #7. For a long period of time during the 1970s, they were listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the loudest rock band in the world, measured at 130 decibels, though other bands have since taken the title. All Falls Down, Hot Rap Tracks, #2. The Who's performances were traditionally extremely loud.

All Falls Down, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks, #4. (They were also notorious for treating their hotel rooms and dressing rooms the same way.). Best Rap Album for The College Dropout. At the end of their live performances in their first years, the band would sometimes smash their instruments and explode smoke bombs, signalling that they had given the audience all they had. Best Rap Song for Jesus Walks. Through it all, Entwistle stood still, seemingly bored by the whole thing, and played intricate, powerful, innovative bass lines. Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for Slow Jamz. The Who were natural showmen: Singer Roger Daltrey (a former sheet metal worker), was a dynamic front man, twirling his microphone on the end of its cord while Townshend played chords on his guitar with great windmill-like sweeps of his arms, and the maniacal Moon bashed and crashed like no drummer ever before him.

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for All Falls Down. From the beginning, The Who drew attention because all three instrumentalists, guitarist Pete Townshend, bassist John Entwistle and drummer Keith Moon played, in effect, lead parts, yielding music at once more cacophonous and sophisticated than standard-issue rock tracks. Best Rap Solo Performance for Through The Wire. They became one of the most popular bands among the British Mods, a social movement of the early 60s who rejected the "greaser" music favored by the Rockers. Best R&B Song for You Don't Know My Name (as a songwriter). The rest, as they say, is history. Best New Artist. When "Zoot Suit/I'm The Face" failed to chart, they quickly reverted back to The Who.

Song of the Year for Jesus Walks. For a short period, under the management of Peter Meaden, they changed their name to The High Numbers during which time they released a mostly unsuccessful single under that name, designed to appeal to their mostly mod fans. Album of the Year for The College Dropout. They eventually changed their name to The Who and Keith joined soon after, making the classic line-up complete. Album of the Year for The Diary Of Alicia Keys (as a producer). In its earliest days, prior to Keith Moon joining, the band was known as The Detours and played mostly rhythm and blues. While not a heavy metal band themselves, their distorted guitars, epic songwriting, and over-the-top stage show were an influence on the genre.

They were noted for the dynamism of their live performances and for their thoughtful music, including Tommy, one of the first rock operas. The Who is a British rock band. ISBN 0312071558. Martin's Press.

St. Before I Get Old: The Story of the Who. Marsh, Dave (1983).

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