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Kanye West

Why does Kanye love architecture so much? We investigate his obsession

Kanye West is a creative icon, and architecture is just another one of his creative obsessions.

His imagination has elevated the music and fashion industry through his ventures: G.O.O.D. Music and Yeezy brand. His obsession has also enabled him to become an industry leader. Now, Kanye seems to have found himself a new obsession: architecture.

It was only natural for Ye to walk down this path. He has a sixth sense for transforming the five senses into art. Everything he has done can be translated into a transcendental experience through harmonious compositions.

Sight and feel were fused to create a new age of fashion. Now, Yeezy Homes is the latest project to accentuate the senses.

For the past few years, Ye has taken inspiration from some of the world’s most renowned architects and interior designers. Thus, Kulture Hub takes a look into who and what inspired Ye’s newfound obsession.

Rem Koolhaas

The famed Dutch architect is the founder of OMA, one of the world’s top architecture firms. He is also known to be one of the most significant architectural thinkers of his generation.

His peers believe so as well by awarding him the Pritzker Prize, the most esteemed architectural recognition in the world.

Ye’s architectural influence still simply comes from the best. His first collaboration with Koolhaas came during the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. The 7 Screen Pavilion housed Kanye’s debut short film, Cruel Summer.

7 Screen Pavilion during the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. Photo Courtesy of OMA
kanye obsessions
The screening of Cruel Summer in side 7 Screen Pavilion. Photo Courtesy of OMA.

He explains his perspective on what it means to be a visual artist and how architecture aids in his ability to do so.

Willo Perron

The Canadian designer has worked with the pinnacle of the art and entertainment world. His work with interiors, graphics, video production, and also performance art has allowed him to collaborate with the likes of Jay-Z, Travis Scott, Rihanna, and Tame Impala.

And further, his collaboration with Kanye has spanned over musical performances, fashion shows, and Yeezy studio design.

kanye obsessions
Yeezy Season 4 Fashion Show. Photo courtesy of Perron-Roettinger Studio
kanye architecture
Yeezy Studio. Photo courtesy of Perron-Roettinger Studio

Kanye’s architecture arm: Yeezy Home

In 2018, Kanye established the architectural arm of his creative empire, Yeezy Homes. The thoughtfully-designed affordable housing project has been in the making for many years.

Then, its latest concepts were brought to life in the summer of 2019.

First inspired by Luke Skywalker’s childhood home, Kanye has then taken his experience with architecture and design with his latest Yeezy Home project.

The Tatooine homes from Star Wars were influenced by these homes in Chott el Jerid in Southwest Tunisia. Kanye’s Star Wars fandom has influenced his Yeezy Home design. (Image courtesy of

The first iteration of Yeezy Homes has been constructed on a 300-acre plot of land in Calabasas. Kanye purchased the land a few years back and is now turning it into his first real estate development.
A glimpse into the Yeezy Home prototype. Photo courtesy of Highsnobiety.

Kanye’s obsession with architecture is an extension of his artistry. Even more, it is an expression of himself.

His music speaks. His apparel shifts culture. And now, his homes will redefine living.

It will all make sense soon enough.

How eco-socialist rapper NoName is using her platform for good

Following several philanthropic headlines featuring Jay Z, NoName took to Twitter to express her stance on giving back. She called for Jay Z to “partner with some black-owned worker coops.”

Responses to the tweet were disapproving of the idea, pointing out Jay-Z’s history of helping the black community. That’s when NoName made a pointed observation. Capitalism facilitates oppression and therefore cannot facilitate true liberation.

What’s a Co-op?

Noname doesn’t just talk the talk, she makes moves. Peep her work with co-ops in Jackson Mississippi. A “co-op” comes from the word cooperative, and the people involved do just that.

People come together to work on providing a service and reap the benefits and profits together as opposed to an owner making the money from other people’s labor.

According to “A cooperative exists to serve its members, but what makes co-ops unique is that the members are also the owners. So, in addition to getting the products and services you need, you also have a say in the business decisions your cooperative makes.”

The point is, the co-op structure is a truly democratic way of dispersing and sharing wealth and resources.

Doing the work

If you couldn’t tell from her posts, NoName supports systems that are outside of capitalism structures and preferably renewable.

Placing emphasis on how capitalism has created oppressive structures and feeds off of them.

Historical knowledge is important in order to understand just how invasively powerful capitalism in the oppression of people of color and the Black community specifically.

Her newly formed book club is particularly adept at recommending works that provide insights into the past, present, and future of conscious activism.

NoName originally rose to fame through her music. A master lyricist, she came up with fellow artist Chance the Rapper. Now, sis is continuing to produce music but is using her platform for social change and economic revolution. Stop sleeping on NoName.

Is it all about a bag or is this Roc Nation and NFL partnership real?

Jay-Z has been an entertainer at the forefront of social justice and change in recent memory. He has helped out struggling families financially, lent lawyers to underprivileged people in sticky situations with the law, and been a leader in advocating for social change when needed.

That is why this move comes as quite a shock.

Roc Nation, the entertainment company founded by Jay-Z in 2008, has reached an agreement with the NFL to lead the league’s entertainment endeavors. These endeavors include helping the NFL select artists for several marquee events like the Super Bowl, and playing a “key role in the production and promotion of new music.”

This is a sure-fire way to get a bag. Still, there were reports last year that Jay-Z rejected the 2018 Super Bowl to show “solidarity” to Colin Kaepernick. And then he dissed the people that did perform.

Who could forget Kaepernick, the NFL quarterback that was blackballed by the league because he attempted to call awareness to systematic oppression and social injustice?

Jay-Z has helped out a tremendous amount of people. Plus, he has stood up against injustice time and time again. But above all else, he is about his money and looking to secure the next bag at whatever cost.

Eric Reid, the former teammate of Kaepernick, who was blackballed along with him until he returned to the league last year, had some thoughts on the move from Roc Nation and reminded people to stay woke.

“With its global reach, the National Football League has the platform and opportunity to inspire change across the country,” Jay-Z said. “Roc Nation has shown that entertainment and enacting change are not mutually exclusive ideas — instead, we unify them. This partnership is an opportunity to strengthen the fabric of communities across America.”

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was similarly optimistic about the partnership. “Roc Nation is one of the most globally influential and impactful organizations in entertainment,” he said. “The NFL and Roc Nation share a vision of inspiring meaningful social change across our country.”

But does the NFL really have a desire to inspire meaningful social change across the country? No. The NFL is a business, and it looks out for its own best interests. Chalk those other lines up to a good PR move, which Jay-Z is helping sponsor.


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Unfortunately, it seems like Jay-Z is doing the same thing here. And when you look at it from the perspective that Ernest Owens lays out above, it comes across as even worse: exploitative.

Jay-Z is giving credibility to the claim that the NFL is working to help affect social change when most of us know this is not true. This partnership from Jay-Z’s perspective is hypocritical, selfish, and purely capitalistic.

It remains to be seen what Jay-Z will do with Roc Nation’s collab with the NFL, but as of now, it looks like the only interests Jay-Z is furthering are his own. Only time will tell and we can only wonder how Beyonce feels about all of this.

Made in America Fest 2019 is full of good vibes, hot music, and great causes

Last year’s Made in America Fest. was chock full of great performances… Nicki Minaj, Janelle Monáe, Based God, Tekashi 69 (aka Lil Lord Voldemort), Meek Mill, Jay Rock, and more.

It was fun. Still, this year, it’s finna be the movie we’ve all been waiting to see. For MIA Fest ’19 headliners Travis Scott and Cardi B will grace the stage. We are sure everyone will be raging — Budweiser in hand.

Not to mention a performance from Juice Wrld whose appearance at Made in America last year rocked the TIDAL stage. Fans held on to stoplights and climbed trees just to get a peek of Juice Wrld’s clout.

For sure, the 20-year-old rapper, singer, songwriter, will crush his set at Made in America 2019, especially if heavy hitters like James Blake, Anderson .Paak, and Jorja Smith are supporting acts.

Additionally, uncle Jay-Z is back at it again with his philanthropic vibes. Over two years he has helped 21 Savage and Meek Mill, handling their legal business godfather style. Then he got the case of a Florida 6th-grader dismissed for not standing during the Pledge of Allegiance.

Now, for Made in America 2019, he looks to give back and have a positive impact on all the communities involved.

Since the inaugural two-day concert in 2012, the event has generated $102.8 million in economic impact for the city. Produced by Roc Nation, this year’s festival will once again benefit the ACLU of Pennsylvania as its official charity partner.

Additionally, a portion of net proceeds will also support The REFORM Alliance. What’s the REFORM Alliance? The initiative’s purpose looks to remove one million people from the criminal justice system within five years. Boss!

Furthermore, the festival not only honors artists and music lovers, but it also benefits organizations that are vital to accomplishing much needed positive work through Cause Village.

As always Made in America is going down at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia, PA and for those unable to attend, global music and entertainment platform, TIDAL, will live stream the festival on

Of course, TIDAL members will have access to a special pre-sale beginning on Tuesday, April 2 at 10 am EDT through Thursday, April 4 at 10 pm EDT. Plus, those who sign up for TIDAL to access the presale will receive a free three-month trial.

The perks for copping TIDAL? Members attending the festival will have access to a wide array of exclusive benefits including fast track entrance, and TIDAL lounge access with air conditioning.

Other come ups include seating and complimentary phone charging, artist meet and greets, ticket upgrades, limited-edition merchandise and premium views of the main stage on the TIDAL VIP riser. Honestly, all of these perks at Made in America were very lit last year.

Hopefully, we’ll see you there fam.

Jay-Z to the rescue! 11-year-old freed after not standing for pledge of allegiance

Jay Z and Roc Nation have been flexing their political muscle and influence quite a bit recently and it’s been one of the most refreshing things to witness.

Last year they hired lawyers for Meek Mill who got locked up for a petty probation violation; last month they helped form a coalition called The Reform Alliance to help push prison reform. Additionally, it was Hov who intervened in 21 Savage’s case when ICE officials wanted to deport him due to his expired visa.

Now, The Root is reporting that Roc Nation has stepped in to help an 11-year-old boy who refused to stand for the pledge of allegiance case dismissed.

On On Feb. 4,  Jabari Talbot told his substitute teacher at Lawton Chiles Middle Academy in Lakeland, Fl., that the American flag is racist against Black people and that he wouldn’t be standing.

According to Bay News 9, the teacher recapped everything in a handwritten statement, saying: “Why if it was so bad here he did not go to another place to live,” she reportedly told him.

Talbot responded, “They brought me here.”

She said: “Well you can always go back because I came here from Cuba and the day I feel I’m not welcome here any more I would find another place to live.” She added, “Then I had to call the office because I did not want to continue dealing with him.”

Shortly after Jabari was arrested by a school resource officer on counts that he’d been disruptive and refused to obey commands. The arrest affidavit also states that Jabari threatened the substitute teacher with physical violence and told the principal and arresting officer he would get them fired.

The moment went viral and eventually got to Roc Nation’s desk where they enlisted the help of attorney Alex Spiro to assist.

“Jabari is a courageous and intelligent young man who deserves all the credit for standing up for his beliefs,” Spiro said in a statement obtained via Complex.

“He should’ve never been arrested or entangled in this situation—his freedom of speech rights were clearly protected under the First Amendment.”

The ROC nation team’s case prevailed and the case has now been dismissed. In a statement to Complex, Talbot’s mom thanked the Roc Nation family for their efforts and commitment to justice.

“My son and I are grateful for all the athletes, entertainers, Roc Nation and community of supporters that have raised awareness about this injustice and showed their support—both publicly and privately […]” she said.

Talbot’s mother continued,

“Although Jabari’s case has been dismissed, I do want people to know this isn’t just about my son—this prejudice happens to African-American kids all across the country. The fight isn’t over, which is why I have a civil rights complaint pending with the U.S. Department of Education. At the end of the day, I want to ensure that no child ever has to experience this injustice again and we will appreciate everyone’s continued support.”

A company that was once founded on artist management, has now moved on to being a full-on label, sports agency, and crisis firm?

Well done, Hov. Well done.


Kanye files trademark for ‘Yeezy Sound,’ is he starting new streaming service?

Kanye West may be trying to start his own streaming service according to documents obtained by The Blast.

According to the Blast, Kanye has filed for trademark of “Yeezy Sound,”

“The Blast obtained documents filed this month by Kanye’s reps to trademark ‘Yeezy Sound’ for purposes that include ‘Streaming of music, audio, images, video and other multimedia content over the internet.'”

This news comes amidst increasing tensions between Kanye and his former mentor and friend Jay-Z. Earlier this summer, Kanye pulled his discography from Jay’s streaming service Tidal and Ye’s legal reps sent a letter to Tidal claiming breach of contract.

TMZ reported at the time,

“Our sources say a month ago Kanye’s lawyer sent a letter to Tidal, saying the company was in breach and the contract was terminated. Over the next 2 weeks lawyers for both sides tried to resolve the conflict but failed. We’re told 2 weeks ago Kanye’s lawyer fired off a second letter declaring again the contract was over.”

TMZ reported that Kanye hadn’t been compensated for bringing new users over to Tidal when his The Life of Pablo album dropped and that the streaming service hadn’t paid him back for music videos.

From TMZ,

“We’re told Kanye’s beef with Tidal is twofold — his The Life of Pablo album resulted in 1 1/2 million new subscribers to Tidal, for which he was supposed to get a bonus but the company hasn’t paid. Kanye also says Tidal reneged on reimbursing him for music videos.”

It’s unfortunate to see Kanye and Jay-Z feuding like this, Jay went at Kanye on multiple tracks on his 4:44 album. Perhaps Kanye wanting his own streaming service goes deeper than his beef with Jay, but the optics speak for themselves.

I’m not sure we need another boutique streaming service and few, if any of them, are profitable whatsoever. Kanye, who has been outspoken about his massive debt, may be making an unsound financial decision by going into streaming, but of course ‘Yeezy Sound’ will definitely be wavy.

Meek Mill’s prison sentence is a harsh reminder of an unjust system

Yesterday, rapper Meek Mill was sentenced to 2-4 years in state prison for parole violations. Judge Genece E. Brinkley sentenced Meek Mill for violations stemming from a gun and drug case from 2008.

The Judge cited an altercation at a St. Louis airport and a reckless driving case from NYC as sufficient grounds to sentence Meek despite the fact that both charges were dropped.

For Meek Mill to still be suffering from a nearly decade old case from when he was 18 is all too representative of the failures of the justice system, especially for young Black Americans.

Meek spoke to Billboard back in July after the release of his latest album Wins & Losses about having a permanent charge on his record that keeps him in the system,

“I was 18 and got beat up by a cop and almost killed by cops. I was just a statistic coming up. The cops are in a dangerous neighborhood thinking everybody else in the neighborhood is dangerous or everybody in the hood is killers. They caught me and treated me like I was a killer. I don’t think that’s really right. The cop gave me a 100 charges with trying to kill a cop. I don’t want to kill a cop. They basically put me on probation for the rest of my life from that point on when I was 18. I’m 30 now and still on probation. I’ve been to jail three times from that one stint of probation. Any mistake you make, you’ll be put in prison. Your freedom can be took.”

And now, Meek Mill’s freedom has been taken again for riding a motorcycle and getting into an argument at the St. Louis airport.

Many in the hip-hop world reacted to Meek’s sentence with anger and shock.

Jay-Z wrote on Facebook about the ‘unjust and heavy handed’ ruling by the judge,

“The sentence handed down by the Judge — against the recommendation of the Assistant District Attorney and Probation Officer — is unjust and heavy handed. We will always stand by and support Meek Mill, both as he attempts to right this wrongful sentence and then in returning to his musical career.”

T.I. offered his support for Meek through this ordeal.

Nipsey Hussle, Isaiah Thomas, and Questlove posted about the nature of the system

Kevin Hart also showed his support to this fellow Philly-native

Ultimately, the whole thing is just sad.

Meek Mill’s lawyer has claimed they will appeal the ruling. It’s definitely shitty to see Meek go through this. Sure, he’s made some mistakes but getting a sentence of 2-4 years in prison for minuscule charges that have been dropped is not any form of justice.

Hold ya head Meek. Hopefully true justice is coming your way.

Nine years ago Jay-Z and Kanye tried to save hip-hop with ‘Watch the Throne’

On August 8th 2011, Jay-Z and Kanye West released Watch the Throne, maybe the most epic collaboration album in the history of hip-hop.

It was also the artistic culmination of Jay-Z and Kanye’s partnership, starting back in 2000 when Kanye’s sample-driven beats revitalized Hov’s sound.

Listening to Watch the Throne now, it still feels relevant, modern, and very much present.

The album represented a bit of a departure for both Jay and Kanye. Some of the production on Watch the Throne was kind of out there.

Songs like “Gotta Have It,” “Ni**as in Paris,” “Who Gon Stop Me,” “H*A*M*,” and “Why I Love You” featured massive, EDM-inspired production that sounded completely different than anything Kanye or Jay-Z had done before.

“Otis” and “The Joy” brought that standard Kanye-sampling sound back to the forefront.

It’s interesting to look at Jay and Ye’s comments about the meaning behind their album.

Jay even said the title Watch the Throne was basically a way of saying that hip-hop was still king as indie rock and EDM rose to prominence in the early 2010s.

Back in 2011, Jay told Miami’s 99 Jamz radio host Lorenzo Thomas that Watch the Throne was really about establishing that culture:

“It’s just protecting the music and the culture. It’s people that’s in the forefront of music, it’s like Watch the Throne, protect it. You just watch how popular music shifts and how hip-hop has basically replaced rock and roll as the youth music. The same thing could happen to hip-hop, it could be replaced by other forms of music. So it’s just making sure that we put that effort into making the best product so we can contend with all this other music, with all the dance music that’s dominating the charts right now and indie music that’s dominating the festivals and still hold off rock ‘n’ roll. Just to hold our place and make sure that the hip-hop culture is still the most dominant form of music around the world.”

Looking back to 2011, when Avicii and Swedish House Mafia made European EDM popular in America and Adele, Mumford and Sons, and Coldplay dominated the pop charts, perhaps it looked like hip-hop was losing its stranglehold on the zeitgeist.

But now, that’s almost laughable. Hip-hop music is popular music. EDM has sort of faded back into niche status, creating interesting sub-genres but nothing compared to the maximalism of early 2010 dance music and no one really listens to rock anymore.

Maybe that’s because Kanye and Jay watched the throne nine years ago.

Regardless, hip-hop and its culture just have more staying power than any other popular music in America.

When listening to WTT, the biggest difference between August 2011 and now is that Jay and Kanye are no longer on speaking terms.

Au contraire, they’re throwing shots at each other.

It’s unclear when all the discontent really started and there were rumors of arguments and disagreements for awhile, but the beef came to the forefront when Kanye went on one of his rants at a concert in November.

After talking about… a lot of stuff including Trump winning, Hillary Clinton, Q-Tip, Mark Zuckerberg looking for aliens, Beyonce winning best video, and his debt, Kanye turned his attention to Jay-Z. Ye said of Hov:

“Jay Z, call me, bruh. You still ain’t calling me. Jay Z, call me. Aye, bruh, I know you got killers. Please don’t send them at my head. Just call me. Talk to me like a man. I’m not trying to be the man. I just am a man, the same as anybody here.”

Kanye was hospitalized after this show and cancelled the rest of his Saint Pablo Tour due to exhaustion.

For his part, Jay had stayed pretty silent on the subject… until 4:44.

Lyrics on songs like “Kill Jay-Z” were clearly aimed at ‘Ye:

“You dropped outta school, you lost your principles/ I know people backstab you, I feel bad too/ But this fuck everybody attitude ain’t natural/But you ain’t a saint, this ain’t KumbaYe/ But you got hurt because you think KumbaYe/ You gave him 20 million without thinkin’/ He gave you 20 minutes on stage, fuck was he thinkin’?/ ‘Fuck wrong with everybody?’ is what you sayin’/ But if everybody’s crazy, you’re the one that’s insane.”

It’s fucked up and sad that it’s come to this point.

Watch the Throne was one of the wildest albums to ever come out of modern music. It might have just ensured that hip-hop remained the popular genre of music in America forever.

We just hope Kanye and Jay-Z bury the hatchet soon, get back in the studio, and give us Watch the Throne 2.

We’re not holding our breath though.

Kanye West and Jay-Z’s Tidal set for legal fight over $3 million dispute

Kanye West has been one of the most prominent artists to support Tidal ever since Jay-Z relaunched the streaming service back in March 2015.

Now there appears to be some trouble in Roc-A-Fella paradise as Kanye has pulled his catalog from Tidal over claims that he’s owed more than $3 million, according to TMZ.

West’s camp apparently sent a letter to Tidal last month, claiming that the streaming service owed Kanye money. TMZ reports the details,

“Our sources say a month ago Kanye’s lawyer sent a letter to Tidal, saying the company was in breach and the contract was terminated. Over the next 2 weeks lawyers for both sides tried to resolve the conflict but failed. We’re told 2 weeks ago Kanye’s lawyer fired off a second letter declaring again the contract was over.”

In lieu of Jay-Z’s rather critical remarks about Kanye on his new album 4:44, which dropped last Friday, there was some speculation that Mr. West’s actions were a response to Jay-Z’s lyrics, but this legal dispute seems to have dragged on for at least a month previous.

Part of the beef is over alleged non-payment to Kanye West over an exclusive streaming deal regarding West’s The Life of Pablo album. TMZ reports,

“Kanye’s beef with Tidal is twofold — his The Life of Pablo album resulted in 1 1/2 million new subscribers to Tidal, for which he was supposed to get a bonus but the company hasn’t paid. Kanye also says Tidal reneged on reimbursing him for music videos.”

Tidal’s official stance is that Kanye never delivered the videos as expected,

“Our sources say Tidal’s position is that Kanye didn’t deliver the videos required by the contract. Kanye’s response … I’ll deliver the videos when you pay me what I’m owed.”

Although Tidal is a company acting out of its own best interests, it’s hard not to see this fight as a very literal Kanye vs. Jay-Z beef, especially after Hov’s criticism of Kanye on 4:44.

This is a rather unfortunate turn of events for two artists that were once best of friends, even brothers.

Kanye owes much of his career to Jay-Z, and Kanye produced or featured on some of Jay’s biggest hits.

Now that lawyers are involved, the whole thing is sure to get ugly. Hopefully both artists can bury the hatchet and get back to making music together, although it’s unclear that that’s ever possible.

Jay Z goes on legendary Twitter rant thanking all of his inspirations

Last night,  Jay-Z took to Twitter to thank those who have been an inspiration to him. The rant mentioned both legendary rappers and new blood.

We barely see the rap mogul make any noise on Twitter. So, why was Hov going off? Oh, you don’t know? So, you fell asleep in February and just woke up today?

Yesterday, June 15, 2017, was an important date in music history, make sure you mark your calendar! Jay-Z became the first rapper to be inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame.

His lyrics have given inspiration to those who had no hope and have paved the path for many other wordsmiths after him.

Yesterday, he humbly took a seat alongside the best writers in music history, reminding us on Twitter that it’s not just a win for him it’s a win for us.

Turned a fad into something legendary

Jay-Z has been running the rap game for years and after the SHOF announced that he would be inducted, he received the wide praise of his colleagues.

Fellow artists such as Nas, Chance The Rapper, Andre 3000, Nicki Minaj, Swizz Beatz, and more artists took to Tidal to celebrate Hov’s induction. The tributes include essays and videos marking the special moments each artist had with Jay-Z.

But as for Hov’s appreciative spree on Twitter last night, the specific selection of artists who have inspired him was quite interesting. Jay-Z had a long list of legends including Rakim, KRS, Nas, Pac,  Redman, and much more.

He even mentioned Pres. Barack Obama, who inducted him into the Hall of Fame

What surprised me the most? The appreciation Hov showed to the young rap artist, like, Chance the Rapper, Earl Sweatshirt, Playboi Carti, and ASAP.

It was Hov’s selection of Mac Miller that turned a lot of heads. I’ve never seen Mac fans so hype. Mac Miller actually became a trending topic last night after Hov mentioned him.

When Mac saw this tweet he definitely screamed like a teenage girl, shit, I would’ve

This had me dead

Just peep the spree, where Hov thanked over 90 rappers, yourself

Haha Hov getting tight at Twitter

Hov definitely on one right now, we hope this rant means some new material may be on the way…