Kanye West: Eric Schmidt is cool; Tim Cook, not so much

It's hard being the next Steve Jobs. Sometimes, Kanye West just has to express his frustrations. And his love.

Kanye. In mask. A symbol of his reticence? Ana Lafond/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to discuss the latest thoughts of America's greatest artist.

If anyone knows of any just impediment to listening to his latest thoughts, please speak now or forever hold your peace.

Peace, you see, is something Kanye finds hard to hold. Sometimes, he has to let it out like a dove of aggressive thought.

I am grateful to Consequence Of Sound for telling me that on Saturday night, West performed at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., and offered entirely uncorrupted (and slightly NSFW) thoughts.

He's fond of calling himself a genius. In this monologue, he explains that he's constantly fighting the media, who use the word "rapper" as a term of denigration to belittle his art ignore his poetic contribution to culture.

In this he may well be right.

However, he has a peculiar fascination, obsession even, with Apple. More than once, he has declared himself the "next Steve Jobs."

I am not sure he's quite yet risen to that assertion. Still, on this night in New Jersey, he decided to target Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Firstly, he explained that the reason he speaks directly to all-eared luminaries like Cook, Google's Eric Schmidt and Nike's Mark Parker is that "I've got a microphone and I can."

Impeccable logic, to be sure. (West has just left Nike for Adidas. Surely you knew.)

So here was his melodious, if malodorous, message to Cook: "Hey, Tim Cook, the Head of Apple, stop trying to get performers to play your festivals for free. You are rich as f***. You're rich as f***."

Although some media outlets have suggested he accused Cook of acting "so dumb," to my own imperfect ears he asked Cook to quit acting like he's down with the culture. (The relevant action starts at around the 12:52 mark.)

It may be that West thinks Schmidt is up with the culture, as he seemed to have second thoughts about Google's eminence grise.

He said he didn't know why he had earlier mentioned him in the same breath as Cook and described him as "my boy and s***." This is surely a description Schmidt may not have heard very often in life.

It's good to see that West is capable of second thoughts. Some might wonder whether he'll one day have some second thoughts about himself.

West offered more hope to those skeptics: "I know that I can do better than what y'all seeing tonight."

 

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