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JPEGMAFIA defends meeting up with Kanye West: “There’s nothing political about it”

JPEGMAFIA has hit back against controversy surrounding his decision to meet up with Kanye West, arguing that “there’s nothing political about it”.

The pair were pictured together in a post to JPEGMAFIA’s Instagram last week, in which Kanye West was wearing a shirt by the controversial black metal band Burzum. They appeared to cross paths after JPEGMAFIA – real name Barrington DeVaughn Hendricks – questioned in a tweet why West was acknowledging musicians “who have less to offer u than me”.

After posting several since-deleted tweets in response to the controversy, the rapper shared an extensive post on his Instagram story addressing the situation.

“when i said i love an artist theres nothing political about it ye is my favorite artist of all time. Ive been saying it for years,” he began [via Stereogum]. “If it wasnt for him i wouldnt be here period. And i love him period.

“its offensive to me that some people on here took a moment i had been waiting on my whole life and twisted into some weird ass oppression olympics. You cant play oppression olympics with a grown black man whose dealt with racism in real time. so please shut the actual fuck up and keep bumping the artist yall like that beat bitches up and rape girls in real life.

“Because thats your reality not mine. dont round me up to be a nazi because your sheltered and stupid and have no respect or context for anything black or for my experiences as black man in this country. Just go to back to reddit. I make goals and i achieve them. you make mean reddit threads. We will never be alike no matter how much u want it be.”

West has been courting controversy since the rollout of his forthcoming collaborative album with Ty Dolla $ign , ‘Vultures’, thanks to his series of anti-Semitic actions. The album allegedly contains anti-Semitic lyrics such as “How I’m anti-Semitic, I just fucked a Jewish bitch.”

West issued an apology in December 2023; a month later, he shared the album’s cover art –per these images – whose typography that has similarities to the font used by black metal band Burzum, whose frontman Varg Vikernes is a convicted murderer and has been known to hold neo-Nazi and far right views.

West recently shared a dramatic trailer for his new three-volume ‘Vultures’ albums and announced their respective release dates.

He confirmed that the long-delayed collaborative project will begin its rollout on February 9 with the first volume. The second two volumes will then be available on March 8 and April 5, respectively.

The news confirms previous reports that ‘Vultures’ would indeed be released on February 9, though at the time it appeared to be a standalone release rather than a trio of volumes.

Ye and Ty Dolla $ign had been teasing their new album for some months, after news first circulated in August 2023 that West would be releasing new music “imminently”.

Elsewhere, Jack Antonoff branded Ye a “little cry baby bitch” after learning that the rapper’s new album will drop on the same day as his.

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