Kanye West: 'I'm Scared of the Grammys'

At NYC concert with Lupe Fiasco, West says he won't appear at next year's awards show

February 28, 2011 10:25 AM ET
Kanye West: 'I'm Scared of the Grammys'
Noel Vasquez/Getty

Kanye West, Mos Def and Lupe Fiasco dropped in as guests at the Robert Glasper Experiment show at the Blue Note jazz club in Manhattan on Saturday night. The gig had been announced with Fiasco as a special guest; the appearances by West and Mos Def were surprises.

Photos: Kanye West's Career Highs — and Lows

Kanye and Mos Def at The Blue Note Ft. Robert Glasper Experiment

In this recording from the show provided by the blog CiscoNYC, West and Mos Def freestyle over a beat laid down by Glasper's band. During West's verse, the rapper gave a shout out to Steve Stoute and echoed the sentiment of the music mogul's full-page ad in the New York Times last week calling out the Grammy Awards for snubbing major rap acts and using big stars to draw ratings without guaranteeing them awards in return.

50 Cent and Kanye West: The Rolling Stone Cover Shoot

Around the 4:30 mark in this recording, West raps "now I'm scared of the Grammys / 'cause everybody know that Dark Fantasy / was the highest rated album in history, get me?" He then raps "so I just avoid it / not to be exploited / not be recorded," which sounds a lot like he's saying that he will decline any invitation to appear at next year's Grammy Awards when his most recent album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is eligible for awards. While it's just an off-the-cuff aside in a freestyle, it's nevertheless a bold position for such a prominent artist.

Kanye & Mos Def Freestyle @ Blue Note Jazz Club [Nah Right]

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

More Song Stories entries »