Kanye West is a controversial figure, and since his split from Jay-Z in 2013, he has become more isolated and volatile. However, he is still a fantastic musician with a history of making hits.
Kanye West’s albums usually all perform extremely well, but some perform better than others. Across his 20-year career, Kanye’s best-selling album has been Graduation, Ye’s third full studio album. Released in 2007, Graduation was groundbreaking, and it shifted the sonics of hip hop.
Songs such as ‘Stronger’ and ‘Good Life’ performed extremely well commercially, and the project sold 957,000 copies in its first week, going on to be certified five times platinum by the RIAA. The album won a Grammy at the 2008 awards for ‘Best Rap Album’.
However, one of the most popular tracks from the album is ‘Flashing Lights’. The track was released as the third single for Graduation and is a club track that marries hip-hop with electronic dance music. It peaked at number 26 on the Billboard Hot 100 but is still considered an important track on the album.
The track is iconic, but Kanye once admitted he didn’t even try while writing it. In an interview with the entertainment blog Concrete Loop, the Chicago native unveiled, “Like on this one, I didn’t even try, I just zoned out, I’d go into the studio and vibe to the beat and just [he starts to rap some of “Flashing Lights”] and it came and God gave me the words.”
Its impact was immense. Dior decided to use the track for their ‘J’adore’ perfume advertising campaign. The song, which features Detroit R’n’B artist Dwele, was also used in an ad campaign for the French vodka brand Cîroc in 2007.
Kanye has made other hits unknowingly and, since its release, has also unveiled that it took him 15 minutes to write ‘It All Falls Down’ from his 2004 debut album College Dropout.
You can listen to ‘Flashing Lights’ in the video below.