Who is Kanye West’s Pablo?
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Who is Kanye West's Pablo?

Kanye West’s albums are usually self-explanatory concerning their titles. His debut album, College Dropout, addressed his success despite dropping out of college, and his first three projects followed this theme. 

West’s fourth body of work, 808s & Heartbreak, was quite literal in its meaning, with emotional lyrics and 808-heavy beats. However, in 2016, the Chicago emcee struggled to find an appropriate name for his then-work in progress. 

Taking to social media to share snippets, ideas and more, Kanye went through several phases with his 2016 project, and it had a number of different names along the way, including So Help Me GodSWISH, and Waves. Eventually, West settled on the title The Life of Pablo.

Compared to other Kanye West albums, the title was divisive, and many needed clarification about what it meant. Fans were highly perplexed about who “Pablo” was. Fortunately, that question did eventually get answered.

Prior to clarifying what it meant, there was a lot of speculation surrounding the title. Loren DiBlasi of MTV News suggested that it could be a reference to the Chilean poet and politician Pablo Neruda.

However, she also suggested that it could be a shoutout to the iconic child who yelled “Kanye for president!” during the MTV Video Music Awards. However, after a period of speculation, West revealed it wasn’t either.

After allowing fans to come to their own individual interpretations, West unveiled that the album was named after three figures named Pablo: the painter Pablo Picasso, drug lord Pablo Escobar, and Saint Paul, the writer of several books of the New Testament.

In an interview on Kocktails With Khloe, Khloe Kardashian’s podcast, West explained, “[Saint Paul] inspired and was the strongest influencer of Christianity. Pablo Escobar was the biggest mover of product, and Pablo Picasso was the biggest mover of art. And that mix between message, art, and product is The Life Of Pablo.”

West sees himself as a messenger, a creator of art and someone who moves large amounts of product; therefore, he felt that all three individuals represented different elements of him. You can hear Life Of Pablo, below.