Kanye West is blaming “voices in his head” for forcing him to storm the stage during the Grammy Awards, held at Staples Center. The controversial rapper rushed the stage after singer Beck was awarded the Grammy for Best Album. West spoke about the incident while a guest on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show on Wednesday morning.
Beck’s win was unquestionably the surprise of the night. His album, Morning Phase, beat out both Sam Smith and Beyoncé, whose album was the favorite to win the award. Smith went on to win four awards that night. Beck also won the Grammy for Best Rock Album. The artist himself looked surprised when his name was announced as the winner of the Best Album Grammy, and appeared at a loss for words when he took the stage.
At that moment, West took the stage and approached Beck as if, in an attempt to duplicate his infamous takeover of a Taylor Swift acceptance speech, made motions as if he were going to steal the trophy from Beck. Just before doing so, the rapper turned his back and jumped off the stage as Beyoncé and Jay-Z, her husband, laughed at his antics.
The husband of Kim Kardashian claims that he initially intended to go on-stage as a joke, but when E! News asked him after the show why he had done it, the producer said that “Beck needs to respect artistry,” and added that the winning artist “should have given his award to Beyonce.” He claims that all of a sudden, his joke did not seem as funny anymore. West puts the blame for the backlash from the ill-conceived prank on E! News, but added that when he is given an opportunity to speak publicly, “it’s very hard for Kanye West to not be very true and vocal to what he feels.”
Beck was unfazed by the incident and shrugged off West’s remarks backstage. He told reporters who caught up with him during an afterparty that even he thought Beyoncé would win. The Grammy winner even lavished praise on West, saying that he considers him to be “genius.”
Comparing himself to “a chiropractor,” the rapper likens his outburst to a chiropractic adjustment, saying that the truth rids oneself of “crooks.” Once done, he says, everybody feels better. West believes that his actions help those involved by making them more famous and selling more albums for them, after which “Kanye just goes on being an a**hole to everyone.”
West admits to being angry with Beck for not mentioning his fellow nominees during his speech, but also said that when “people who you wouldn’t think should win” do take home an award, it’s a sign of respect to pay homage to those who did not win. The fashion designer also partially took back the implicit criticism he had aimed at Beck backstage, saying that his words “came off the wrong way.” He added that he knows that Beck is one of the country’s “most respected artists,” and that he would still play basketball with him if it was okay with Beck.
This is not the first time that West has caused an awards show ruckus. In 2009, while singer Taylor Swift was giving her acceptance speech, after winning the Best Female Video award at the MTV Video Music Awards, he grabbed the microphone out of her hands, saying that Beyoncé should have won the award instead. His action prompted significant backlash and caused even President Obama to refer to his as a “jack**s.”
Swift seems to have forgiven West for robbing her spotlight on stage. In addition to posing for smiling photos with her at the Grammys, the artist told Seacrest that he and Swift are going to do studio sessions together, but makes it clear that it is his lack of “elitism about music” that allows for the collaboration of West and Swift to occur.
By Jennifer Pfalz
Image by Kim Erlandsen – Flickr License