West has certainly received a fair amount of backlash for his hard turn toward spiritual music. But West has also received a groundswell of support— particularly from gospel artists themselves. In January , West began his Sunday Service performance series in Calabasas, California, with the choir group The Samples and other collaborators performing a combination of hymns and secular pop songs rewritten with Christian themes. Is Christ really at the center of this gathering?
“It has to reach the young people”
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If Thou withdraw Thyself from me, where shall I go? Such was the power of the gospel. It is ostensibly a favorite of Kanye West , who sampled Pastor T. As West sells it, figuratively and literally , Jesus Is King is a repudiation of his past sin, an absolution, a blank slate from which to spread the word of a very specific God, one whose blessings rain down on a cul-de-sac in Calabasas and a ranch in Jackson Hole. By most accounts, fewer and fewer Americans identify as Christian, and a steadily growing number describe themselves as atheist or agnostic. The religious, meanwhile, identify as more devout. Consider the power of the evangelical right on the political landscape, into which West has inserted himself in recent years, causing some of the turmoil that presumably sent him seeking refuge in Christ this spring. In a recent piece for Vibe , the writer Kiana Fitzgerald, who shares with West a bipolar diagnosis, put forth a moving theory connecting spiritual fervor with the experience of mania. Though Jesus Is King followed what is now a characteristically chaotic album rollout for West, the result is much more focused than his album ye. Some of the hallmarks of 20th-century gospel are evident, and warmly applied: the rise and fall of a formidable choir; the velvety growl of a Hammond organ; an undulating piano; rhythms that stretch through history and geography, all the way back to West Africa.
The album promptly arrived at p. Jesus Is Born enjoys a runtime over an hour, while spanning a lengthy 19 tracks. West's transformation adds another chapter to his story of serving God, as his attention in music could turn to working on the Jesus Is King sequel that he teased earlier in with Dr. First off, fans should know this definitely isn't a Kanye West album, but more so a Kanye West production. West's name isn't mentioned in the artist section for the project, and the album wasn't released under his G. Music label. He didn't quite execute his vision of diving head-first into his religious roots, as the project remained a secular body of work.