...an oddfuture… Does Kanye Make the Liszt?
By, Noah Cuff
“You see it’s leaders and it’s followers / But I’d rather be a dick than a swallower.”
Parents applaud, take pictures, admire their “talented” child. You remain sitting, mouth gaping, adjusting your hearing aid to check if you just hallucinated. You check your heart once again...no it’s still beating. This is really happening. Your own grandchild just performed “New Slaves” at his electronic music recital.
Whether you love him or hate him, Kanye will go down as one of the greatest and most influential musical artists. The world has followed him through his highs and lows for over a decade now. Time Magazine has put him on their top 100 influential people list twice already, with the second time being listed as a “Titan”. And you don’t reach that level of stardom by just being another dick with a mic.
Music has come a long way and has only been exponentially evolving, getting more creative and more influential. In today’s world it’s unavoidable. With the internet and 24/7 news, getting into the lives of artists has never been easier. This is the criticism stems from when discussing Kanye.
I challenge you to take a step back and completely separate what you hear on the news and tv about Mr. West, and what you hear in his music. It’s not like he was the first “rock star” to ever exist.
To justify Kanye, I like to use the world renowned composer Franz Liszt as an example. To many people not familiar with Liszt, he probably sounds like any other boring composer you learned about in music appreciation but he is much more. The term Lisztomania actually derives from his concerts where hysterical female admirers would swarm him to fight over his gloves and handkerchiefs. They would try and get locks of his hair, steal broken piano strings, and even brought glass containers to pour his coffee dregs into. For christ sake, the man was like a precursor of boy bands. I digress, though my point still stands. Liszt is not what the world might see him as through his label, nor is Kanye.
Kanye has helped to change the way we create music. From his amazingly creative sampling, his artistic use of autotune, and the amazing emotion he brings to his songs, he has cemented himself in the list of ‘The Greats”. Whether you like it or not, Kanye is here to stay. Hey who knows, maybe one day your grandchild will be complaining about some boring rapper he learned about in music appreciation. Of course by then they’ll probably be listening to ambient alien punk or some shit. So when that time comes, just relax and pop in those “ancient” air pods and blast some 808s & Heartbreaks.