How Kanye West Became A Rap Icon

Kanye West is one of the biggest and brightest stars on the rap scene. He’s one of the best-selling artists of all time. However, he wasn’t always in the spotlight. Here’s how Kanye West became a rap icon.

1. He made music his priority early in life.

Kanye started pursuing his passion of music as early as the third grade. He started writing poetry as a child, which led to rapping and eventually composing. When he was in high school, Kanye started spending time in recording studios, befriending producer/DJ No I.D., who soon became his mentor.

After his high school graduation, Kanye attended art school before transferring to Chicago State University to study English. However, once he realized that his classes were taking away too much time from his music, he decided to drop out at age twenty to pursue music full time.

2. He developed his career as a producer for other artists.

Before Kanye was a best-selling recording artist, he was the superstar producer behind everyone else’s hits. He started his career as a producer by mixing beats for local artists in the mid-90s. Towards the late 90s, he started to work with bigger names. He worked with Foxy Brown, Harlem World, and Goodie Mob.

Kanye’s big break came in 2000 when he became a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records. He revitalized Jay-Z’s rap career with his contributions to the iconic album The Blueprint in 2001. Kanye also produced hits for major stars such as Ludacris and Janet Jackson.

3. He didn’t take no for an answer until he had his own record deal.

Though he was incredibly successful as a producer, what Kanye really wanted to be was a rapper. However, thanks to his middle-class upbringing and usefulness in the production chair, most label executives didn’t want to take Kanye seriously as a rapper. Because his image didn’t match that of his rapping peers, he was turned away time and time again.

However, Kanye didn’t let initial rejection hold him back. After a car accident in 2002 left him with his jaw wired shut, he wrote and recorded the song “Through The Wire” to express his feelings about the accident. This track became the foundation of Kanye’s debut release and the rest of his career.

Kanye West went on to become one of the most awarded artists of the 21st century. By prioritizing his music and never taking no for an answer, Kanye became a true rap icon.

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Kristen Harris enjoys listening to a wide range of music, from Taylor Swift to, on occasion, Celtic instrumental. She also spends her time writing, reading, and baking.

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