No matter what is going on in the world Kanye West is in the spotlight 24/7. Whether it’s rumors about Ye releasing music, Twitter and Instagram rants, and even internet fights with drake, to his Yeezy fashion line and his upcoming projects partnership with Gap, Ye always has something up his sleeve.
Donda was first mentioned by Kanye in mid-2020. It was something thrown around by Kanye since then. Followed by the same bipolar timeline a lot of his recent work has followed. With constant mixed signals with false release dates, his listening parties at The Mercedes Dome in Atlanta, Georgia, and Soldier Field in his hometown of Chicago without the album releasing caused overall confusion in the hip hop community if the project was possibly still being worked on. Kanye’s fans are afraid that Donda is following in the footsteps of the last Kanye West’s album that was supposed to come out Yandhi and never fully coming. This confusion caused the internet to do what the internet does, make many memes.
Later on, in July Kanye held two listening parties at The Mercedes Benz Stadium with fans. Both were live-streamed on Apple music. The Apple Music Live stream was a 24/7 Livestream showing what was going on under the Mercedes dome. It showed Kanye West’s living situation in what looked like a storage closet with the bare essentials of a bed, random articles of clothing, a TV, mic, and a computer to work on the album while artists like Steve Lacy, Chance the Rapper, Jadakiss, and much more periodically came in and out the room to record verses and talk to Kanye. The stream even showed Kanye falling asleep for the night.
The listening parties started to seem like nothing more than a tease in the eyes of Kanye fans with songs being played at the listening party but nothing being released on streaming services. At this point pretty much everyone thought it was nowhere close to being done or that it was never going to release. After the third and final listening party at Soldier Field it somehow gave everyone another false sense of hope of Donda releasing on Sept. 27 but to no one’s surprise, it did not. With no announcement, Kanye released Donda later that that week on Sunday morning and sent almost a cultural reset all over social media. Donda is Kanye’s longest album to date with 24 tracks and is nearly two hours long with an extremely wide range of features from artist Playboi, Cardi B, Jay-Z, Fivio Foreign, Travis Scott, The Weeknd, Kid Cudi, and many more.
I have heard many different opinions on the album. Personally, I think this is a really good album. I feel like Kanye took a step back to let other artists showcase their skills which are good to see from him at this point in his career. My personal favorites off the album were Off The Grid, Believe What I Say, and Moon.