Bob Ezrin, who has produced albums by the likes of Pink Floyd, Alice Cooper and KISS, had the tenacity to question Kanye West’s credentials and West has gone on a Twitter rant showing his ignorance of the music business.
To be fair, Ezrin is a producer, not exactly a name above the title job for those who are casually into music, but his resume is filled with work on major albums. Among them:
Love It to Death – Alice Cooper (1971)
Killer – Alice Cooper (1971)
School’s Out – Alice Cooper (1972)
Billion Dollar Babies – Alice Cooper (1973)
Berlin – Lou Reed (1973)
Welcome to My Nightmare – Alice Cooper (1975)
Destroyer – KISS (1976)
Peter Gabriel – Peter Gabriel (1977)
The Wall – Pink Floyd (1979)
Nils – Nils Lofgren (1979)
Two Steps From the Move – Hanoi Rocks (1984)
Every Beat of My Heart – Rod Stewart (1986)
A Momentary Lapse of Reason – Pink Floyd (1987)
Revenge – KISS (1992)
The Division Bell – Pink Floyd (1994)
Strays – Jane’s Addiction (2003)
Saturday Night Wrist – Deftones (2006)
Scratch My Back – Peter Gabriel (2010)
Now What?! – Deep Purple (2013)
Fuego – Phish (2014)
Hollywood Vampires – Hollywood Vampires (2015)
Ezrin recently wrote an editorial for the Lefsetz Letter, a venue where he has previously written on the state of the industry, questioning the achievements of Kanye West in light of his handling of his newest album.
I feel like opening with “What kind of crazy, fucked up world is it where this guy is considered to be culturally important!!???” But that’s your line.
Sure, he made some great music for himself and others. But in spite of what the aspirationally-cool media keeps saying about him, unlike other creators in his genre like Jay-Z, Tupac, Biggie or even M.C. Hammer for that matter, it’s unlikely that we’ll be quoting too many of Kanye’s songs 20 years from now. He didn’t open up new avenues of public discourse like NWA, or introduce the world to a new art form like Grandmaster Flash, or even meaningfully and memorably address social issues through his music like Marshall, Macklemore and Kendrick. In my opinion, his productions are his best work – and I admit I’m jealous of several of them – but I don’t think he’s on quite the same level as Timbaland and Rick Rubin among several others. His songwriting – meaning the stuff with melodies – is sophomoric at best. I was embarrassed for Sir Paul – one of the greatest Artists of our era – by their collaboration, though it was pointed out to me that this got him his highest chart position in decades. So I guess he didn’t mind. But I kind of did!
Instead Kanye’s greatest achievements have been in the form of excessive behavior, egomaniacal tantrums and tasteless grandstanding.
Ezrin goes on to talk about Kanye’s released then withdrawn for more work album, adding “What galls me the most though is the thought that he and others – especially the media – might actually BELIEVE that he’s an artist. With a capital “A.” That what he’s doing is of any real consequence besides for the sheer train wreck gawker value of it.”
Now, nobody really expected West to let this go by, at least not with his record for ranting. On Wednesday, he took to Twitter and let all his emotions out.
Has anybody ever heard of Bob Ezrin???
What the fuck does he know about rap…
I’m tired of old people that have no connection with anything trying to comment on music!
Do something relevant… Please don’t speak on me bro ever again!!!
Your kids are ashamed of their dad… Sorry for speaking about kids… but could you imagine if you were Bob Ezrin’s kids…
I’m so sorry for them… I will send them free Yeezys to make up for the embarrassment that you have caused your family!
Bro you said Macklemore was more important musically than me… no offense to Macklemore, he’s a nice human being!
Bob please never speak in public again… you are everything that is wrong with the old guard …
it’s guys like you that run companies and don’t invest in Ye even if I’m your kid’s idol!!!
Rock and Roll was stolen… Rap was exploited…
I made Dark Fantasy and Watch the Throne in one year and wasn’t nominated for either and you know who has 2 albums of the year.
Welcome to pop culture!!!
Ezrin I truly feel sorry for your friends and family that they have had to suffer an idiot like you for so many years…
God bless the fools … all positive vibes!
Let’s face it, Kanye could have been a little more mature in his response (and, come on, layoff Taylor Swift) but the first line “Has anybody ever heard of Bob Ezrin???”, proves that he does not have a grasp on the pop culture that he so strongly suggests that he controls.
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