Five years have passed since Kanye West rudely interrupted Taylor Swift at the Video Music Awards but he’s back into the headlines for insulting one of the rap industry’s most beloved performers, Tupac Shakur.
In a statement that’s sending shock waves across the music industry, Kanye West dissed Tupac Shakur by calling him the “most overrated rapper in history” while chatting after a celebrity showing of Jonathan Liebesman’s newest film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, at the Hollywood Theatre in Hollywood, California.
The gala was hosted by the movie’s stars, Megan Fox and Will Arnett and attendees included a host of musicians and film stars.
The topic of 2Pac came up in conversation when an undisclosed person mentioned to Kanye that his newest studio album, Yeezus, reminded him of Shakur’s breakout record, Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.
Shakur is one of the top selling artists of all-time, with album sales in excess of 75 million and counting, but West is not impressed and didn’t appreciate the comparison.
“How you gonna go compare my music to 2Pac?” he said, “2Pac wasn’t no musician. He was an actor. What was he in? Juice? Above the Rim? He was the most overrated rapper in history and you come up in here comparing him to me? A real rapper…a real star.”
Kanye went on to explain that Shakur became famous only “cuz he got shot” and because the fact that he had spent time in prison propped up his street image during the 90’s when gangsta rap peaked in popularity.
“Gangsta rap ain’t even real music. You wanna hear real music listen to The College Dropout, Late Registration, Graduation, 808s & Heartbreak…”
There’s no need to finish the quote here as West went on to name every single one of his albums.
It isn’t the first time that Kanye has knocked down other artists while giving himself a firm pat on the back, but to so coldly insult the man that Rolling Stone ranked as the 86th greatest musician of all-time, it seems like West has finally overstepped his boundaries.
In related news, West let his narcissistic tendencies boil over at a show in Sydney, Australia when he insisted that everyone in the arena stand before he would continue on with his performance.
“I decided I can’t do this song, I can’t do the rest of the show until everybody stands up,” he said. “Unless you got a handicap pass and you get special parking and sh*t.”
Jay-Z, who collaborated with Kanye on their joint studio album Watch the Throne had this to say about the controversy:
“You know I love Kanye. He’s my boy. But that’s messed up, man. He shouldn’t be throwin’ those rabbit punched down low on 2Pac.”
As of publishing, Kanye West has yet to issue an apology.
UPDATE: Power 106FM has an on air interview scheduled September 22nd with Kayne West. We will keep updates on what Kayne has to say.