Why Did Kanye West Thought He Can’t Make A Better Album Than The Beatles?

Why Did Kanye West Thought He Can’t Make A Better Album Than The Beatles? | I Love Classic Rock Videos

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In the ever-confident world of Kanye West, a self-proclaimed “genius” with a penchant for headline-grabbing pronouncements, even the legendary Beatles commanded a grudging respect. 

Kanye, ever the strategist, saw the Fab Four as a mountain to climb, not just another peak to conquer. He even outlined the near-impossible conditions another artist would need to achieve to reach their level.

So, forget the recent controversies. Let’s rewind to a simpler time when Kanye’s pronouncements were less inflammatory and more insightful. Today, we peek into why Kanye recognized the Beatles’ greatness and what it truly meant to stand out from their shadow. 

Kanye aimed at artists who proclaim their superiority over The Beatles

In a 2008 interview, Kanye West surprisingly took aim at artists who boasted their work was superior to the Beatles. He argued that true impact requires time, stating, “Beatles records – people have known them their whole lives.”

He acknowledged this longevity was crucial for surpassing their achievements, referencing his own song “Love Lockdown” and hoping it would enjoy similar staying power.

While “Love Lockdown” doesn’t quite match the Beatles’ global recognition, it has demonstrably influenced other artists. Released in 2008, it remains a well-known song, and its minimalist, emotional style inspired later works by Drake and Childish Gambino.

Interestingly, 2024 hasn’t solidified its long-term impact, reflecting the very point Kanye made about the Beatles’ enduring legacy.

“I’m trying to make those songs that are just classic songs”

In a glimpse into his creative process, Kanye once offered a clear explanation for his own success. “I was always interested in that melody,” he declared. Tired of “f*cking around”, he decided to focus solely on crafting catchy tunes, believing it’s what propelled him to become “one of the big artists.” 

He also emphasized that his lyrics weren’t about typical R&B clichés, but rather maintained a “guy music” vibe with an added dose of swagger.

“My lyrics are from the same perspective. It’s not no R&B get-down-on-your knees-and-beg-a-girl type bullsh*t. It’s still, like, guy music, but it’s swag on it,” the rap star explained.

Beyond his own popularity, West revealed his broader musical ambition: “I’m trying to make those songs that are just classic songs,” he stated. This suggests a desire to create music that transcends trends and remains relevant for generations, a goal that goes beyond mere chart success. 

Kanye collaborated with Paul McCartney

While Kanye West’s collaboration with former Beatle Paul McCartney on “FourFiveSeconds” was a massive success, it didn’t necessarily bring him closer to overshadowing the legendary Beatles. The reception of their second collaboration, “Only You”, which garnered far less attention.

The question of whether West has created an album as impactful as a Beatles record is ultimately subjective. However, it’s undeniable that even at their most controversial moments, the Beatles never approached the level of negativity and offensive commentary that has become associated with West in recent years.

This raises concerns about the long-term cultural impact of his music, with the possibility that his songs may fade from public memory due to the controversies surrounding him.

While West’s artistic talent and musical achievements are undeniable, it’s important to consider the broader context when comparing him to the Beatles. Their cultural influence and staying power are significant, and the stark contrast between their public personas and West’s recent actions makes a direct comparison challenging, if not impossible.

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The success and impact of “Love Lockdown”

Kanye’s “Love Lockdown” soared to the top, landing at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and spending 23 weeks on the chart. It cemented its place as one of his most recognizable hits, solidifying the track’s success.

This song was a centerpiece of 808s & Heartbreak, arguably West’s most significant and influential work. The album itself held the top spot on the Billboard 200 for a week and remained on the charts for 39 weeks. Notably, it played a crucial role in the resurgence of 1980s synth-pop in the 2010s, with its influence evident throughout the decade’s music scene.

While “Love Lockdown” achieved undeniable success, it’s important to remember Kanye’s own words about surpassing the Beatles. He himself acknowledged the near impossibility of matching their impact, recognizing the Beatles’ timeless legacy and the decades of connection their music has built with audiences.

Although he might not have created an album that rivals “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” his music’s influence and “Love Lockdown’s” enduring popularity solidify his position as one of the most impactful rappers of all time.