It was easy when it was Morrissey being awful. I don’t like him and I’m not especially fond of his music. But Kanye? Oh, man.
I love Kanye’s music. I do. So when he’s wearing a MAGA hat in the White House I am not a happy bunny, because I know how Smiths fans feel, and it isn’t a good feeling, it’s a bad feeling. I don’t mind the texting at the theatre or any of the other non-stories that get written about him. But the Trump stuff. I don’t like the Trump stuff.
Have I stopped listening to him? Fuck no. I mean, I’m not planning on listening to Ye again any time soon, because it wasn’t very good, but the other stuff? Most of the other stuff is great. I’m listening to him as I’m typing this.
Kanye has always seemed, to me, to be under greater scrutiny than most other musicians. Anything he does that is even slightly likely to merit a tutting is headline news. People treat him differently, as other. (One of the reasons I eventually gave up on 6Music was Shaun Keaveny’s regular rants about how he thought Kanye West was an idiot every time he was mentioned in the music news. It’s funny, if the Rolling Stones are in the music news Keaveny never brings up Bill Wyman dating a thirteen year old Mandy Smith, if Eric Clapton is mentioned he doesn’t tend to dwell on the Enoch Powell stuff, but mention Kanye and watch him go. Clothing range this, don’t like his attitude that, not like ‘proper’ rock stars from the past the other.)
But the Trump stuff? Sure. You can’t look past that. That’s problematic as hell. I know. I know.
Kanye says he’s done with politics now. I’m hoping the Trump stuff was all part of some huge art project. That he will release an album where he has built beats from the confessions of Republicans. That we can all have a good laugh about it and move on. But even if he remains a Trump supporter (like say, Gene Simmons or Clint Eastwood who don’t seem to get an eighth of the shit Kanye does) as long as the Trump stuff doesn’t reach the music (like it did in the awful Ye vs. the People) I’ll keep listening.