The 34-year-old rapper known for his outbursts was the headline act at the Big Chill music festival Saturday night, where he ranted in the middle of his set about being misunderstood and underappreciated.
“I walk through the hotel and I walk down the street, and people look at me like I’m (expletive) insane, like I’m Hitler,” he said. “One day the light will shine through and one day people will understand everything I ever did.”
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West received light boos from the crowd as a result.
The performer also defended the music video for his song “Monster,” which features cannibalism and girls hanging from their necks.
“Who saw the video before it got banned, before they took it down and before women’s groups starting saying that a person that lost the most important woman in his life is now against women in some way?” asked West, referring to the 2007 death of his mother Donda West.
West, who started his set roughly 30-minutes late, apologized to the crowd for his tardiness, saying he needed to make sure his performance was great.
“Michael Jordan changed so much in basketball, he took his power to make a difference. It’s so much (expletive) going on in music right now and somebody has to make a (expletive) difference,” he said.
The multiplatinum-seller is known for his outspokenness, most notably his diss toward Taylor Swift at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, where he grabbed the microphone from her as she accepted the award for best female video and said Beyonce should have won it. In 2005 he said “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” during a Hurricane Katrina telethon.
At the music festival, West talked about some of his awards show drama, saying some of his sponsorships were canceled as a result.
But West closed his show on a positive note by paying tribute to Amy Winehouse.
West, who said he met the late singer a few years ago during Paris fashion week, played snippets of Winehouse’s “Tears Dry On Their Own” and “Back to Black.” He said it was “beautiful” to meet the performer and that she was “amazing.”
Then, in Kanye fashion, he began to rant.
“Thank you for protecting your artists that are still here,” he said to the crowd. “This is for McQueen, for Amy, for Michael and for all the media, can you lighten up on all your artists that are still here?” he asked, receiving a roaring cheer from the crowd and leaving the stage with his 3-man band and 20-something backup dancers.