Yeezus rises: Kanye West slights Obama, speaks at Harvard, back on tour

11.18.13 4 years ago

AP Photo

Kanye West is on a tour de force – of music and words. The ever-candid rapper appeared on Philadelphia radio station Hot 107.9 this morning (Nov. 18) and fired back at President Barack Obama, who has called him a “jackass” on more than one occasion.

“I”m not gonna mention him no more, I”m past that,” West said when asked about his relationship with Obama.

Referring to the Taylor Swift-VMAs incident that started the war of words, Kanye said he’s suffered enough: 

“People was fine with me being everyone’s punching bag for about five years. This is the person we love to hate, so if you want to distract people from everything that’s going on […] just say you hate Kanye and there’s going be 30 other people who say they hate Kanye. That was kind of my position in culture and he kind of used that too. ‘Oh, he’s a jackass,’ because that’s how the world felt.”

Watch the Obama snippet below. In two other videos, here and here, West talks about his early rap influences, the Yeezus tour and being a “creative genius.”
Creativity was the primary theme of West’s talk on Sunday night (Nov. 17) at Harvard University, where he visited architecture students in the Graduate School of Design. Excerpts of the full transcript, available here, include:
“And I know that there’s more creativity to happen. And I know that there’s traditionalists that hold back the good thoughts and there’s people in offices that stop the creative people, and [who] are intimidated by actual good ideas.”
West offered the students tickets to his newly resumed Yeezus tour, which hit Philadelphia on Saturday night (Nov. 16) after a series of cancelled and postponed dates. On Oct. 19, a truck accident damaged the elaborate set, which includes a 60-foot circular LED screen and fake mountain.
New York Magazine talked to the tour”s production designer, John McGuire, who revealed that the show was a risk even before the equipment was damaged: “I tried to convince him to do other things. But Kanye wanted a 60-foot screen, so we had to build him a 60-foot screen,” McGuire said. McGuire’s team rebuilt the set in ten days.

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