Rhymefest Speaks on Ghostwriting For Kanye West

A photo posted by Rhymefest (@rhymefest) on Oct 6, 2015 at 4:02pm PDT


“It does kind of bother me that I go to my friends’ $20 million houses, and last year I was trying to figure out how to pay my mortgage. It’s not their fault, totally. When you look at the way artists get paid now, streaming has decimated the income of the writer, so the writer doesn’t really have a career anymore. My ASCAP royalty checks went from a lot to almost nothing.”

“I stumbled upon the sample, and it was supposed to be on my demo,” recalls Rhymefest. “But Kanye had access. He was already signed to Def Jam and had an album slated, so this is the point where you could become selfish or practical. He rapped the song better than I probably would’ve at that time. He knew more about the industry, and he made that song a success. So he should get the credit for that. But he wouldn’t have all that without my words.”

Many have even called it Kanye’s most personal song—which strikes Rhymefest as a tad strange, since he wrote virtually all of the lyrics. “It was a personal song, but it was my words,” he says with a polite shrug.

But according to Rhymefest, he’s been writing with Kanye since The College Dropout, and hasn’t received credit on a lot of the songs he’s worked on.

“I’ve written for all of Kanye’s albums with the exception of 808s & Heartbreak,” he says, adding, “There are a lot of songs that my name isn’t even on.”

Full Interview: DailyBeast

Rhymefest spoke on his documentary “In My Father’s House” and past work writing for Kanye West. It claims his name wasn’t credited on some of the songs he did work on. Does Kanye get a pass on having ghostwriters because he is a producer?