The artists Kanye West said he could never be better than
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The artists Kanye West said he could never be better than

Kanye West is a controversial figure who has said many self-glorifying things over the years. From comparing himself to Steve Jobs and even Jesus, the Chicago rapper is known for blowing his own trumpet. However, there was a time in his career when he was a little more humble.

Over 15 years ago, the Vultures 1 creator was asked about the quality of his music and happily admitted that he would never be able to stand up to The Beatles concerning his albums.  West rarely acknowledges there are musicians who are more impactful than himself, and he usually proclaims he is second to none. However, in an interview after the release of his fourth album 808s & Heartbreak, the ‘Champion’ lyricist explained why the rock band is revered.

Speaking to MTV News, West criticized artists who deem themselves greater than they truly are. Speaking to the television station, Ye explained, “Whenever bands come out and say, ‘This album is better than The Beatles,’ it is impossible to make an album better than The Beatles unless you’ve got 30 years!”

He continued, “Beatles records — people have known them their whole lives … hopefully five years from now people still play ‘Love Lockdown’, and people still play the records that I’m doing right now.” 

‘Love Lockdown’ was one of 808s & Heartbreak’s most memorable hits. As of 2024, the track is still cherished by many. With its autotune-heavy style, it set a precedent for artists like Drake and Travis Scott, who, to this day, draw upon the melody-driven album.

West gave MTV News a compelling theory as to why his projects had been so popular, explaining, “The reason why I’m one of the big artists is I was always interested in that melody. I was like, ‘Yo, let me stop f*cking around, I’m just gonna, like, make it be all melody.’ My lyrics are from the same perspective. It’s not no R’n’B get down on your knees and beg a girl type bullsh*t. It’s still, like, guy music, but it’s swag on it.”

As an admirer of The Beatles and their success, West then collaborated with Paul McCartney on the tracks ‘FourFiveSeconds’ and ‘Only You.’ The latter was a huge hit. Although Kanye is now a braggadocious billionaire, he is on record admitting that Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr all made better music than himself.

You can hear West and McCartney’s collaboration below.