Black Music Month: Happy 45th birthday to Kanye West!

Credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty

June is Black Music Month. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter decreed that the month of June would be dedicated to celebrating African-American music and musicians who helped the country dance, express their faith through song, march against injustice and to defend the country’s enduring promise of freedom. and opportunities for all.

Isn’t it ironic that someone considered by many to be one of the greatest and most influential hip-hop artists of all time is celebrating their birthday during this special month? That’s right, Kanye West turns 45 today! Kanye Omari West was born in Atlanta, Georgia. When he was three years old, after his parents divorced, he and his mother moved to Chicago, Illinois. West started writing poetry at just five years old, started rapping in third grade, and started composing music in seventh grade. He would eventually meet his mentor, producer/DJ No ID After Kanye got his first sampler at age 15, No ID taught him how to sample and program beats.

After years of producing for up-and-coming local artists in the Chicago area, his name started to resonate loudly. This led to the biggest break he finally got in 2000, when he started producing for the artists Roc-A-Fella. Kanye’s work on Jay-Z’s 2001 album “The Blueprint” has been highly regarded since its release over 20 years ago. Following the success of the album, he would go on to produce for a host of artists including Beanie Sigel, Freeway, Cam’Ron, Ludacris, Alicia Keys and Janet Jackson.

Although Ye gained a ton of notoriety as a producer, his main love was still rapping. Dame Dash reluctantly signed Kanye to The Roc (in part to keep him from signing to other labels). Basically, a year after being signed to the label, Kanye had a life-changing car accident. His jaw was shattered and had to be wired in reconstructive surgery. The product of the ordeal would eventually become Kanye’s breakthrough. He released ‘Through The Wire’ and his debut studio album ‘The College Dropout’ and we can say the rest is history.

Since then, Kanye has released 10 more solo and 3 collaborative studio albums, winning 24 Grammy Awards. While his musical ability is what we recognize him most for, it’s surely not the only thing. The Louis Vuitton Don has always been very important in fashion. He has collaborated with Nike, The Gap, Louis Vuitton and APC to name a few and also leads the Yeezy collaboration with Adidas. Donda, the creative content company named after his mother, was also founded by West. His agency Donda Sports recently signed two big-name athletes with more to follow. He also founded GOOD Music in 2004 and has helped propel the careers of artists like Big Sean, John Legend, Teyana Taylor and Pusha T. West has even dipped his hands into the world of architecture over the years.

Kanye wouldn’t be himself if he didn’t also come with controversy. He’s found himself in the headlines countless times when it comes to his relationship status, his views on religion and politics, his antics at award shows, and even the mental health issues he faces. All in all, whether you love it or hate it, you can’t deny its impact on our culture and especially the music industry. He’s one of a kind and has influenced so many over his time in the game. We salute a true legend on his birthday and to celebrate, we’ve created a gallery of some of our favorite photos of Ye over the years. year. Check it out below. HAPPY 45TH YEEZY!

7. FATHER EXTEND MY HANDS

8. THE STALL

Kanye Jeen-Yuhs Docuseries Assets

Source: Netflix

9. THE ERA OF 808

Kanye West in 2008

Source: Getty

10. ROSE GOLD

Kanye West and Amber Rose

Source: Getty

14. KIMYE

Kanye West and Kim Kardashian at the TIME 100 event

Source: Getty

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