It’s fashionable these days to hate Kanye Omari West. Ask people to give you reasons and there’s no shortage of ones they’ll come up with:
* His notoriously rude behavior at awards show (including as recently as this year).
* Acting like he’s the second coming of Jesus Christ (and posing like Jesus for magazine covers).
* His celebrity marriage to Kim Kardashian, and the never-ending media coverage of “Kimye” every time you turn on the TV as a result.
* Living off the reputation of his past success while turning out increasingly more mediocre albums.
* An ego that just doesn’t seem to quit where his swoll head can’t even fit into most spacious concert arenas.
If you look at the 20 videos for 2004 though, you can’t deny that Kanye West at one point was the darling of the hip-hop scene. Even the arbitrarily chosen #1 video on this list, Twista’s “Overnight Celebrity” clip, is a song that was produced by Kanye West. That’s immediately followed by his own hit single “Jesus Walks,” one of his most personal and profound tracks, before (as some would allege) the fame and fortune went to his head. It doesn’t end there though. There are more hits produced by and/or featuring Kanye West in 2004 than we had room for in 20 selections – an astonishing fact really – so Talib Kweli’s “I Try” and Slum Village’s “Selfish” got left off the list just to name a few. Maybe now a decade plus later we can complain about his ego and behavior, but try to tell me he didn’t deserve to have a chip on his shoulder in 2004 and I’ll disagree in the strongest possible terms.
1.) Twista – “Overnight Celebrity”
2.) Kanye West – “Jesus Walks”
3.) Petey Pablo – “Freek-A-Leek”
4.) Juvenile f/ Soulja Slim – “Slow Motion”
5.) Ludacris – “Get Back”
6.) T.I. – “Bring Em Out”
7.) Jay-Z – “Dirt Off Your Shoulder”
8.) Snoop Dogg f/ Pharrell – “Drop It Like It’s Hot”
9.) The Game f/ 50 Cent – “How We Do”
10.) Dilated Peoples f/ Kanye West – “This Way”