Russell Simmons Calls Kanye West "Genius," Kanye Responds

Russell Simmons writes that Kanye "desperately wants to leave his imprint in the history books."

Kanye West has made headlines recently, airing out frustrations about breaking into the fashion industry.

Now, co-founder of Def Jam Russell Simmons has written an op-ed on 'Ye for Global Grind, providing his take on the rapper, whom he feels is misunderstood. "I recently sat down with Ye in New York and got the chance to hear about his hopes and ambitions, his frustrations and contradictions, his happiness and his anger," wrote Simmons. "But through it all, what I felt from Kanye was an artist who desperately wants to leave his imprint in the history books. What’s often times misunderstood about Kanye is that people believe he wants all of this for himself, in fact, quite the opposite, he wants all of this for the rest of us. He wants to destroy the glass ceiling with 808′s and crack music…so one day WE have the power to see all of the lights. Certainly he wants a piece for himself…everybody would, but at his core, at the bottom of his heart, lies an inner-truth that has led to an external battle to make this world a bit easier for those who have been dealt a hand of struggle, by showing them a glimmer of hope through his art."

Rush continued, specifically addressing Kanye's rants. "It is his generation that has this power. He knows it. He feels it. He tastes it. And he so badly wants it like mad. So, you may think he’s mad when he goes on his 'Yeezy rants,' but it is a different kind of mad. It is a mad that keeps you up at night, knowing that if you fall asleep, you are wasting time. It is a mad that makes you go into the lab and work seven days with no sleep, cause you want to perfect your craft."

After the op-ed was posted, Kanye took to Twitter and responded:

Simmons' op-ed comes in light of a recent outburst from Kanye during an interview with Sway Calloway. During the interview, Kanye started yelling at Sway. “How Sway? You ain’t got the answers, man. You ain’t got the answers. You ain’t got the answers. You ain’t got the answers, Sway. I’ve been doing this more than you.” Kanye also called out Nike during a recent concert.

RELATED: Kanye West Hints At Signing Adidas Deal After Fallout With Nike

84 Comments

  • Anonymous

    To the so-called Genius: "Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius"

  • Rob

    I give Kanye credit for having his own voice.. I don't agree with him most of the time and lately his personality has taken more of a stage than his music.. but maybe its what he wants.. we don't know. The guy is the only superstar in the music business who can release album after album that sound nothing like his original sound and people still buy the shit out of it... so he must be doing something right. Either he really is a genius for having so much success and still being so frustrated with what he sees.. or he's just crazy...

  • da commanda

    must be butt buddies...

  • Amanda Lucus

    before I looked at the draft that said $5113, I have faith ...that...my father in law woz like really earning money part time from their laptop.. there brothers friend started doing this for less than twenty one months and as of now paid the loans on there home and bought Ford Focus. this link... www.Fb39.com Yeah, and he and Meek were just photographed together a few weeks back. The only one getting caught up in his feelings is...Drake. I know, it's hard to believe that Drake got emotional.

  • Anonymous

    People use the work genius so much it doesn't even mean as much anymore.

  • jasonnns

    http://i1.ytimg.com/vi/WbhiTDooqz8/mqdefault.jpg

  • micheal myers mask devils

    http://i1.ytimg.com/vi/rOoj3N5o8hY/mqdefault.jpg

  • Kanye West

    And this is how you know that a real genius exists: scroll all the way down on the comment section and you'll find a bunch of ignorant ass comments. You fucking philistines don't know what it's like to be awake at three o'clock in the morning designing tight ass, nut hugging skinny jeans with a bedazzler & glitter. You don't know what it's like to design an adidas shoe with a box of macaroni and glue. That's ART! That's GOD! That's genius! It's creative and it's super fun, too! You're just jealous of my superior intellect and appreciation for art, and for that, I spit on all of you. Ya'll can burn in hell for all I fucking care! Dumb asses.

  • Anonymous

    Kanyes Cock > Michael Mittermias Ass

  • sxxx9

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLvnBmi05XM

  • sxxx9

    rihhanna tuffer than a lion so hardd. snoop u after rihhanna niggas after u snoop. snoop u gay homo

  • xx009

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHCQlVQ-oSQ

  • Anonymous

    My favorite HHDX trolls: 1. #Ruletalk 2. Rick ross troll (Bawse) 3. Dentaldamboy 4. Drake

  • Anonymous

    RUSSELL A FAG, MURDA INC IS ON A COMEBACK. FRESH OUT DA PEN HOTTEST TRACK OF 2013. #FUCKFAME #RULEYORK

  • Anonymous

    Russell is getting all analytical and adding symbolism and meaning where it doesn't belong. Stop talking about Kanye West like he is some Fitzgerald-esque character of tragedy trying to make his imprint on the world to further culture. That's straight wack. Kanye West is an egomaniac. He spent the early part of his career underestimated and seen as nothing more than a beatmaker. These circumstances caused him to have develop an extreme confidence to pull through, and it worked. He made "College Dropout" and followed it up with "Late Registration". Those are classic Hip-Hop albums, especially "College Dropout". You could mention that with any of the great Hip-Hop albums. But then that confidence that brought him to success festered into arrogance. He made it to the top. Where else to go in music? So then he switched it into bragging, how he was right and everyone else was wrong. How rich he was and how everyone thought he never could be, blah blah blah. But then that arrogance took a turn for the worse. He became narcissistic. Screaming that he is "Shakespeare in the flesh." That is the most ignorant, distorted, egotical thing I ever ever heard. Does he understand who Shakespeare is? What his historical and cultural significance is? He has been respected as one of the best playwrights and creative minds for OVER 400 YEARS! Kanye West and Shakespeare don't belong in the same sentence. Russell Simmons is trying to paint a picture of the man that is not honest. He is no victim. And just because he is a self-proclaimed "Genius" and made a handful of good rap records does not qualify someone as a genius; and Russell Simmons should know this.

    • Anonymous

      Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius

    • Kanye West

      Anonymous #2 don't know what he talking about. I want to do bigger things. I want to change the world & corner the market with overpriced white t shirts & gaudy-looking sneakers.

    • Anonymous

      Yeezys sold out the ass and made Nike money. Along with the Jaspers from LV. In most of his interviews he speaks of his people his own kind, that's why he says he wants to the be the Tupac of fashion. Someone that goes against the grain and change. I wouldn't necessarily say he's fighting the powers limiting him but the powers limiting black people. He hates not seeing black people designing fashion or anything of that nature. He's a genius. He will make a change in some way shape, form, or fashion

    • Leviathan McKraken

      *Gives standing ovation* Thank you sir (or ma'am).

    • milligan

      You are on point,with that comment...

    • Anonymous

      Kanye doesn't want to be greater. If that we the case he could not be making songs such as "I am God" on albums called "Yeezus". Kanye wants us to percieve him to be greater. You speak of him as if he is some quiet artist working dutifuly in his studio and letting his craft speak for itself. Clearly that is not the case. You ask, why can I not give my attention to something else? I can't because Kanye won't fucking let me. He is an attention whore he forces himself into every corner of the media. To the extent where he marries a the queen of talentless media whores. What powers are he really fighting? Fashion designers? Nike? Come on. He is pissed because they won't give him a handout. Jay-Z believed in him, took a risk, and funded his music career. Now he expects and equivilent name in fashion to take that same risk, based off what? Leather Skirts and Yeezus sneakers. Get the fuck outta here.

    • rapgod1245

      kanye has goals, instead of being happy with being a rapper, which he never really was in the beginning , but learned how to be to, he wants to be greater. If he chooses to be i dont understand why so many people have a problem with it. Ans what is even more confusing is, if you cant stand how he is , why not give your attention to something else. I was on the fence about how he acts now, but after hearing his explanations, I understand he chooses to fight the powers limiting him , instead of staying quiet, and there is nothing wrong with that.

  • Anonymous

    hate people just hate thats your legacy

  • Tram

    Kanye is cliche and cheesy. Not a significant artist.

  • ThaInnaLegend

    Nobody believes Kanye is working 7 days with no sleep. Only way a human being could do that would be meth amphetamine and, you might get away with it once and then be alright but you'd never be able to produce quality creativity with your brain half functioning. Seals train for several weeks with no sleep and have to perform mindless physical activities throughout but this is something else...Russell drank the kool-aid

    • Anonymous

      "i prefer to get two birds stoned at the same time" lol, Trailer Park Boys fans on HipHopDX.

    • carAnthony

      U don't kno cat, I already with no sleep for about 3 days, still livin', still killin' these internet philosophers. Must prove quality of your livin tho, if u wanna be able to do dat. Maybe some of drugs can help u, lol...

    • Anonymous

      i prefer to get two birds stoned at the same time

    • Anonymous

      you probably believe killing two birds with one stone means killing two birds with one stone as well right?

  • Anonymous

    this comment section is one of the reasons i don't even bother reading comments from sites like this...unless it's worldstar...because their comments are actually funny

  • micheal myers mask demons

    kill kill

  • micheal myers mask demons

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iP-jYiuDD9g

  • kkk

    http://i1.ytimg.com/vi/5VzKRI7JbVk/mqdefault.jpg

  • xxxxx

    yea uh it ant safe for u ppl. UH YEA YOU PPL

  • xxxxx

    among other singers rappers threating to kill ppl or trick them or both rite their in songs nigga ill kil u over and over from game to 50 cent to nas eminem missy elliet ect

  • xxxxx

    reddmans rockafella video will show u.

  • xxxxx

    left eye so uh whats going on on cocla cola 13th sea side??

  • xxxxx

    check out planes and buildings in kings leon are u that somebody wu tang triphent ice cube wicked.

  • xxxxx

    bill cliten is santa bush is goffy elf obama holloween mummy monster. tell us more about the oct and xmas of 2013 rappers and 9/11 and sea side burnings

  • Mortis

    Russell aint been shit since the late 80s, early 90s. Kanye is a gay fish

  • ht7byjyu

    where u at nigaaaa yooooo YOOOOOOOOO

  • ht7byjyu

    gonna rob rissele simmons and his homo family throw diggy off his home alone house

  • Phiba Optik

    Is this Kabala bullshit finally affecting Russell's head? Has Russell reached the point where he has more dollars than sense?

  • donworryboutit

    Genius status is some serious shit.. not some like i did ain internet IQ test and scored 180 or "my mom says im a lyrical genius"... just because a lot of people do understand your shit.. and a lot of people misunderstanderstand your shit ( which really isnt possibly because there isn't much to "understand" since noone knows how to break into other industries with no talent or knowledge besides ""hip-hop""album sales recognition. Which even with that... doesn't make you a know-it-all.and to think you can just venture into whtever you want tojust makes you more of a dick... to break it all down -Einstein = genius for figuring out some serious shit -Da Vinci = some serious design shit with some genius involved -Jay-Z = the guy Kanye could have been if he was 12 years eqrlierand way less of a retard and not a fag and half-cool -Any real fashion designeri Someone Kanye West wants to be but has no credibility in that business to be

  • insanemacbeth

    i rate 'YE himself more. than i rate his music.

  • blaq_boi

    "Crazy"... That's what they say about everyone who revolutionizes sh*t. Atleast Ye' has the balls to verse his feelings instead of just swallowing it all up for the sake of remaining relevant in the eyes of frenemies.

    • Anonymous

      Balls to cry, just handle your business; Gates didn't cry, Zuckenberg didn't cry, Jobs didn't cry, Booker T. Washington didn't cry, Oprah didn't cry, they just did.

  • COCA

    LOL YALL INTERNET KIDS ARE FUNNY AS HELL... DO YALL SEE WHAT WORLD YALL LIVE IN, WHERE EVERY LIL GIRL YOUR AGE WANTS TO TWERK??? ALL YALL GONNA MARRY SOME HOES LOL

  • Russell Simmons

    My nephew JoJo Simmons is a lyrical genius! Kendrick Lamar couldn't touch him...

  • Anonymous

    So begging friend from fags in the fashion industry and marrying a ho is then new quantum physics????

    • Anonymous

      she a ho cause she came up off dat sex tape and made it into a career with no talent, skills, or education.

    • blaq_boi

      Tell me something, what exactly makes Kim a ho? ONE sex tape with then BOYFRIEND? ONE failed marriage? Yes... Ok, thats all it takes to be a ho these days. Goodluck with what you'll think of the mother of your children. GTFOH

  • Anonymous

    If that nigga a genius then ima dolphin/penguin.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah I remember when Einstein was married to a ho who fucked every mid level industry nigga. GENIUS!!!! Stop throwing that word round,i feel sorry for anyone who is an actual genius.

  • Drizzaveli

    Its Drake season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • fraud

    Russell Simmons? The same guy that said Obamacare saved hundreds of thousands of americans?!! lmao get the FUCK outta here!

  • 666

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fq3QmtV8vT0

  • 666

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JCGNTO0qaVc

  • bh6tngjyujki

    kill dmx kill styles p

  • bh6tngjyujki

    kill all rappers and singers they new things about other ppl they never helped

  • bh6tngjyujki

    their is no such thing of a cop or a judge they shouldent be here kill them all

  • h7bgj7yuh

    this is a online warning all rappers singers acters are setting up normal ppl in schools and malls and blameing them for things they never did and trying to kill them.with their friends and forceing kill them all

  • Anonymous

    GIVE ME A CHANCE Youtube is all about finding new artist, & though I been rapping for a while im still consider a new artist. I just want my music heard thats all, im not looking for no record deal, getting famous 'r anything like that.! so please just spare a few sec. to check me out, & if you like what you heard please SUBSCRIBE so ill know you actually listen & support http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PaSNK0pm4eY

  • Anonymous

    It's unfortunate to see the lack of sophistication and critical analysis in most of the commenters' posts.

  • Fuck off and die ur boring

    Can everyone stop calling this self-loving fuck-boy a genius. He a real dope producer and an average mc that's it he wants ppl to bow down to him like hes a god and throws a tantrum like a spoilt child when he realizes it aint gonna happen

  • Anonymous

    kayne attacked sway cause he feels sway is beneath him...only cause sway dont kayne money (or more) thats why he can never begin to understand a 'common folk' like us sway, breakfast club whomever. but he will dick ride russell jay , nike whatever

  • Anonymous

    Kanye turns up in interviews kinda the same way Consequence does, lol. Kinda weird

  • Anonymous

    Kanye been saying a lot of real sh*t, y'all get caught up & sh*t go over your heads. Like how you know about 808's and didn't see Yeezus coming?

    • Anonymous

      Who would want to support his ideas with the ridiculous fashion choices he makes on his own?

    • Anonymous

      You're the most brilliant person I've seen on here anonymous. Kanye is somewhere laughing at everybody that they took the Bound 2 video seriously and hated it. He's laughing hysterically that even black people don't understand that a man with only 100 million can't mass produce several different shoe designs and clothing ideas without going completely broke. They just want to see him rap and dance and sing in autotune, that's it. We limit ourselves just as much as white people do.

  • anon

    what? kanye acting graciously? amazing, miracles do happen.

    • chris

      he acts graciously where it's due. if i slapped you in the face, would you thank me? that's what nike did. he's praising the guys at adidas for giving him his deal.

    • chris

      he acts graciously where it's due. if i slapped you in the face, would you thank me? that's what nike did. he's praising the guys at adidas for giving him his deal.

  • ETK

    I bet you Kanye would say Russell Simmons got all the answers

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