Don Henley: Kanye West Is 'Arrogant,' Frank Ocean a 'Talentless Prick' - Rolling Stone
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Don Henley: Kanye West Is ‘Arrogant,’ Frank Ocean a ‘Talentless Prick’

Eagles singer-songwriter says rapper “won’t be president”

Don HenleyDon Henley

Don Henley had strong words for Kanye West and Frank Ocean, calling the former "arrogant" and the latter a "talentless prick."

Danny E. Martindale/Getty

A year after complaining about Frank Ocean sampling “Hotel California,” Eagles singer and drummer Don Henley is still bitter. The R&B singer had used the entirety of the Eagles hit in his song, “American Wedding,” on his 2011 mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra. “I didn’t think he was cool,” Henley told The Guardian in a new interview. “I thought he was a talentless little prick. And I still do.”

Henley had previously asserted that he felt Ocean did not understand or respect intellectual property, a point he reiterated in the new interview. “Some of these young kids have grown up in a world that doesn’t understand or respect copyright material or intellectual property,” he complains. “They look at songs as interactive playthings.”

The newspaper prodded Henley on by asking him if he’d feel differently if a bigger artist like Kanye West were to sample a song he’d written. “No, I’d be just as pissed off,” Henley rejoined. “I don’t like him, either.”

The Eagle also scoffed at the rapper’s humorous 2020 presidential run, which the rapper announced at the MTV Video Music Awards in August. Despite the fact that West’s wife, Kim Kardashian, recently said on Ellen that he was “serious” and would “do his best” with campaigning, Henley shrugged the whole thing off and summoned more strong words for the rapper. “He won’t be president,” he says. “He’s either incredibly arrogant or incredibly insecure, or some combination of the two.”

Henley has been out promoting his new solo album, Cass County, which finds him reconnecting with his Texas roots and singing country. “It’s incumbent on us to export something that has some quality to it, that reflects our culture in ways that are positive and meaningful,” he recently told Rolling Stone Country. “In order to do that in country music, we have to go back to the country because this music originated with people who lived in rural America and lived authentic lives.”

In This Article: Don Henley, Frank Ocean, Kanye West


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