Almost six months after his wife Kim Kardashian appeared completely nude in Paper Magazine‘s Winter 2014 issue, Kanye West graces the cover of Paper‘s American Dream issue and even pens his own cover story. In fact, the magazine devoted 12 pages to one of TIME‘s most influential, allowing the rapper to showcase who he really is.
Inside the issue, Kanye discusses being an innovator, why he doesn’t address certain newsworthy events on social media and racism.
The issue hits newsstands April 27, but you can check out a few tidbits below.
On being an innovator:
Graduation was an innovation. 808s & Heartbreak was an innovation. The song “Niggas in Paris” was an innovation. “Only One” was an innovation. “FourFiveSeconds” was an innovation. I care about innovating. I don’t care about capitalizing off of something that we’ve seen or heard a thousand times. I’m not a capitalist in that way. I’m an innovator. That’s my job. I like two things: I like innovating and I like making things better. It’s not that I always have to invent things that are new. Sometimes I can take something that’s there and attempt to make a better version and that’s what gets me off. Bottom line.
On his daughter:
When I look in North’s eyes, I’m happy about every mistake I’ve ever made.
On why he doesn’t speak out on social media:
People have asked why I don’t speak out — on social media, for example — about events in this country. The way I see it, it’s not about a post on social media from me when there are people dying. There’s people in Chicago dying. There’s people all across the globe dying for no reason! There’s people who’ll never have the opportunity to live their lives for terrible, nonsensical reasons. I care about people. I care about society. I care about people being inspired. I care about people believing in themselves, because that’s the scariest thing. The modern population cannot be controlled by the system — they break the system.
On “Never Let Me Down” I rapped, “Racism’s still alive, they just be concealing it,” but for the next generation that’s not necessarily true. Racism is something that’s taught, but for the new post-Internet, post-iPad kids that have been taught to swipe before they read, it’s just not going to affect them as much. They realize that we are one race. We’re different colors — my cousins and I are different shapes and we’re all from one family. We’re all from one family called the human race. It’s simple as that. This race is up against some interesting things — poverty, war, global warming, classism — and we have to come together to beat this. It’ll only be as a collective that we can beat this, and we can. We can create a better world for ourselves.
On those persistent Illuminati rumors:
I’m tired of people pinpointing musicians as the Illuminati. That’s ridiculous. We don’t run anything; we’re celebrities. We’re the face of brands. We have to compromise what we say in lyrics so we don’t lose money on a contract. Madonna is in her 50s and gave everything she had to go up on an award show and get choked by her cape. She’s judged for who she adopts. Fuck all of this sensationalism. We gave you our lives. We gave you our hearts. We gave you our opinions!
You can read more here.