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1. The name Kanye means “the only one” in Swahilli.
2. Kanye Omari West was born June 8, 1977 in Atlanta.
3. Kanye’s net worth is estimated at around $120 million.
4. He got his first big break through No I.D. (born Dion Ernest Wilson) is a veteran hip hop producer and current VP at Def Jam. He taught Kanye how to produce beats and gave him his start in the music business-all because their moms forced the two to hang out.
5. He sold his first beat to local Chicago rapper Gravity for $8,800.
6. He dropped out of college and had a slew of random jobs. He worked as a telemarketer and sold insurance to Montgomery Ward credit card holders. “I was way better than most of the people there,” he told Playboy. “I could sit around and draw pictures, basically do other [things] while I was reading the teleprompter.
7. His father Ray West was a black panther in the 60s and 70s and he later became one of the first black photojournalists at the Atlanta-Journal Constitution and later became a Christian counselor. His mother Donda was English professor at Clark Atlanta University. He later moved to Chicago at the age of three when his parents divorced.
8. Kanye says he realizes, “Nothing is promised in life except for death.” and he lives everyday with that in mind.
9. Throughout his albums, he has collaborated with other artists on 45 of those tracks. That’s quite a lot really, considering in total there are 80 tracks on these albums, which is over 50 per cent
10. Kanye lived in China for more than a year with his mother when he was in fifth grade. His mother was a visiting professor there at the time and he joined her.
11. He initially rose to fame as a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records. He is was influential on Jay-Z’s 2001 album, ‘The Blueprint’, producing 5 of the 13 tracks and two bonus tracks, more than any of the other producers on the album.
12. At the start of his music career, Kanye apparently kept his business dealings all in the family. West’s late mother Donda-a professor of English at Clark Atlanta University and later Chicago State University-retired from teaching to become her son’s manager for the early part of his career.
13. He is a huge fan of Fiona Apple and her music. Yeezy told Apple she was “possibly [his] favorite” and that the lyrics and singing on her debut Tidal made him want to work with producer Jon Brion “so I could be like the rap version of you.” West went so far as to say “I hold you higher than Lauryn Hill in my eyes.”
14. Kanye’s struggle to transition from producer to MC is well documented throughout his music. However, ‘Ye didn’t keep to quiet about his desire to become a full-fledged rapper. Def Jam A&R Chris Anokute recalled that Yeezy would often play his demo for him in his cubicle when he would stop by Def Jam’s offices to pick up his production checks.
15. His single debut is “Through the Wire” because he recorded it while he was still wearing the metal brace in his mouth.
16. Kanye was in a near fatal car accident while he was driving home from the studio in October 2002. The injuries were bad and he had to have a metal plate put into his chin. While he was recovering in hospital, he didn’t want to stop recording music so he asked for an electronic drum machine which he used to continue composing new music.
17. He admits that the idea of becoming a male pornstar crossed his mind once or twice before.
18. Kanye attended Chicago State University/Columbia College in Chicago. He dropped out to pursue music which is why he named his 2004 debut album, “The College Dropout.”
19. He’s had over 12 million record sales and 30 million download sales in the United States alone, making him third for solo male artists and sixth overall on the list of best-selling digital artists.
20. He’s only the 52nd most followed account on Twitter, with 9,516,386 followers, beaten by pregnant girlfriend Kim who is 17th with 17,828,190. Bieber tops it with 39,869,708.
21. Kanye is noted for his fashion sense, having owned a clothing line and started off many fashion trends around the world, even inspiring the pioneer of crazy fashion himself, Michael Jackson, who apparently phoned him up to ask about the jacket he wore in the music video for ‘Stronger’.
22. West settled down in 2012 with Kim Kardashian, who gave birth to their first child, daughter North, in June 2013. Four months later, he proposed to the reality star on her birthday.
23. Even after being named Best Hip-Hop Artist at the MTV Europe Music Awards in Copenhagen, a fuming West storms on stage as the award for Best Video is being given to Parisian duo Justice vs. Simian. In a profanity-laced tirade, West says he should have won the prize for “Touch the Sky,” because his video “cost a million dollars, Pamela Anderson was in it.”
24. His nicknames include Ye, The Louis Vuitton Don, Yeezy or konman.
25. ‘College Dropout’ was album of the year by almost every publication (New York Times, Time Magazine, GQ, Spin, XXL, Rolling Stone). NME voted Franz Ferdinand’s debut number one and Kanye’s album number seven.
26. Kanye was named International Man of the Year by GQ in 2007 at a ceremony at Covent Garden’s Opera House in London.
27. He launched an online travel company called “Kanye Travel Ventures” (KTV) through his official website in 2008.
28. Kanye broke down at a concert in Paris, a week after the passing of his mother, Dr. Donda West, as he tried to sing the verses of “Hey Mama,” a song he had written earlier on in his career in dedication to her.
29. Kanye West is an avid basketball fan. He is regularly spotted at LA Lakers games, and has written almost as many lyrics about the sport as he has about himself.
30. After the infamous Taylor Swift Gate VMAs incident in 2009, he decided to leave the country for a while. He went to Japan, then Rome, before finally moving to Hawaii for 6 months to start working on music again.