MUSIC

In Kanye’s Defense: Bob Ezrin Has Absolutely No Idea What He’s Talking About

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When it comes to infuriating Kanye West, music producer Bob Ezrin just dethroned Nike CEO Mark Parker. Ezrin recently published an unfavorable critique of Ye and his The Life of Pablo album, which in short argued unconvincingly that the rapper was less relevant than Macklemore. LOL. Insert crying emoji.

“[Kanye] didn’t open up new avenues of public discourse like N.W.A., or introduce the world to a new art form like Grandmaster Flash, or even meaningfully and memorably address social issues through his music like Marshall, Macklemore and Kendrick,” Ezrin penned.

“But in spite of what the aspirationally-cool media keeps saying about him, unlike other creators in his genre like Jay-Z, Tupac, Biggie or even M.C. Hammer for that matter, it’s unlikely that we’ll be quoting too many of Kanye’s songs 20 years from now,” he continued.

Kanye responded in a lenghty Twitter rant calling Ezrin out of touch. And out of touch Ezrin clearly is, or at minimum, in denial when it comes to Ye’s relevance. “Gold Digger”, “Jesus Walks”, and “Slow Jamz” are already over a decade old … think about that. To say no one will be quoting Kanye lyrics in 20-years is ridiculous. Even more ridiculous is believing that anyone will be quoting Macklemore lyrics in a year, let alone in 20-years.

Love him or loathe him, the College Graduate has four number one records, over 20 Billboard Top 20 singles and 21 Grammy Awards. To dismiss those accomplishments is not only unfair, but embarrassing for a music critic. Ezrin failures do not stop there though, they extend to him conveniently omitting Mr. West’s discography to make the vapid argument that Mackle and Slim Shady are more socially conscious.

Watch the Throne, while braggadocios, is an unapologetically PRO BLACK album. One that explores police brutality, Black fatherhood, past and present Civil Rights struggle, Black existence and accomplishment. Without Watch the Throne establishing the theme of Black excellence, one could argue there would be no “Formation” aligning, or communal celebration of “Alright.” While Kendrick Lamar’s militant stance is more poetic, and Beyonce’s more fierce, they’re not necessarily MORE socially aware than Ye’s “New Slaves” or “Black Skinhead”efforts, just different.

Look, Kanye West is insane. He’s a douchebag. He’s an asshole. Arguing against those descriptors is an exercise in futility best avoided. And why bother, he tells you as much on Twitter or on songs like “I Love Kanye”. But the most polarizing musical artist of our generation is also creative, inspired, passionate and thoughtful in all that he does. Whether you find that execution abrasive or endearing is a personal preference, but he’s certainly someone that we will be talking about for decades. And thanks to Kanye, Ezrin is now someone we’ll be talking about for a couple of hours.

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