- Poor Taylor Swift – did we mention she’s 19-years old? She had barely accepted her Best Female Video award for the MTV Video Music Awards September 13th when Kanye rushed onstage, grabbed the microphone out of the shaken teenager’s hand and began his outburst. “I’m sorry – but Beyoncé had one of the best videos of all time!,” he whined. Swift was both startled and disappointed. She told People magazine: “I was standing onstage, and I was really excited because I’d just won the award, and then I was really excited because Kanye West was onstage. And then I wasn’t excited anymore after that.”
- 2005’s Live 8 tour, which was organized to promote awareness of AIDS and global poverty, was a success, with a 3 billion worldwide audience. But in Philadelphia, Kanye shocked the capacity crowd by droning on about the widely-discredited belief that AIDS was a “man-made disease,” “placed in Africa just like crack was placed in the black community to break up the Black Panthers.” Or, as he sang in “Heard ‘Em Say”: And I know the government administered AIDS/ So I guess we just pray like the minister say.
- Kanye has made it a kind of personal signature to air the dirty laundry (and do the dirty) at award shows. In 2004, he walked out of the American Music Awards after he lost to country singer Gretchen Wilson for Best New Artist title (he modestly declaimed backstage, “I was the best new artist this year.”) Then, in 2006, Kanye invited himself onstage at the MTV Europe Music Awards, blasting his loss for Best Hip-Hop Artist to Justice and Simian, launching into an expletive-rich (read: F-bombs to go around) tirade. His “Touch the Sky” video, he complained, was superior since it had “cost a million dollars. Pamela Anderson was in it. I was jumping across canyons.” Afterwards, he offered an excuse-packed apology, lamely saying that he’d had “a little sippy sippy” earlier in the evening.
- Kanye can do no wrong. Even when someone’s trying to say that he’s done right. Chris Wilson of Entertainment Weekly rated the 2008 “Glow in the Dark” tour a B+, which The Kanye took as a personal affront: “What’s a B+ mean?,” he blogged, annoyed. “I’m an extremist, its either pass or fail! A+ or F-! You know what, F____ you and the whole f___ing staff!” He also offered, helpfully, that Wilson, the unfortunate reviewer, was a “very miserable person.”
- Kanye, in the Easter spirit, posed as the Son of God. On a 2006 Rolling Stone cover (entitled – in a pastiche of fellow-tool Mel Gibson’s blockbuster film – “The Passion of Kanye West”) he appeared, complete with crown of thorns, in full messianic passion. Christ-like figure that he is, Kanye up-yours’ed his critics, telling them, “You want me to be great, but you don’t ever want me to say I’m great?”
- They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Lots of celebs, for good or bad, have been impersonated on Twitter; some say it comes with the territory. In May, Le Kanye lashed out at some Tweeters who had been claiming to be him: “I DON’T HAVE A F___ING TWITTER,” his blog read. “HEY TWITTER, TAKE THE SO CALLED KANYE WEST TWITTER DOWN NOW … WHY? … BECAUSE MY CAPS LOCK KEY IS LOUD!!!!!!!!!”
- From our Saving The Best For Last File: At Bonnaroo in 2008, West took the stage nearly two hours late – at almost 4:30 a.m., alienating not only the normally sedate (or sedated) hippie crowd, but fellow musicians, as well. The next day, performer Robert Randolph led the Tennessee music festival’s audience in a round of “Kanye Sucks!” This was not to be tolerated. The Kanye posted on his blog: “I’m typing so f___ing hard I might break my f___ing Mac book Air!!!!!!!!” Like a man possessed, he pounded into the keys on his laptop: “Call me any name you want … BUT NEVER SAY I DIDN’T GIVE MY ALL!” The event’s producers were also not spared: “WE WERE OBVIOUSLY DEALING WITH F___ING IDIOTS WHO DIDN’T REALLY HAVE THE CAPACITY TO REALLY PUT ON THIS SHOW PROPERLY. THEY TRIED 2 GIVE ME A TIME SLOT WHERE IT WAS STILL LIGHT OUTSIDE … I HAVE A F___ING LIGHT SHOW DUMB A__, IT’S NOT CALLED GLOW IN THE DARK FOR NO REASON SQUID BRAINS!” The unkindest cut of all.