The politically and socially infamous and ever-talented rapper and producer Kanye West shared his still-yet-to-be-released new album “Donda” via a massive listening party at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on July 22. The stadium was filled with intrigued and enthusiastic fans who cheered and danced together with no COVID-19 restrictions, enjoying the celebration of the return of the controversial rapper whose failed presidential run didn’t seem to sully the evening.
West was seen standing on the tarped football field, moving his arms and body to accentuate the new music that came blasting through the stadium’s speakers. The rapper’s soon-to-be ex-wife Kim Kardashian and his children North, Saint, Psalm and Chicago were present at the massive listening party.
The artist’s 10th studio album, “Donda,” is named after his mother Donda West who passed away due to plastic surgery complications in 2007. The album was set for release at midnight on July 23, but the album did not emerge as scheduled.
A representative for West told Pitchfork that the new official release day is Aug. 6 via G.O.O.D. Music and Def Jam Recordings. Pitchfork reported, “The album that West played in Atlanta featured his reunion with JAY-Z, plus contributions from Pop Smoke, Travis Scott, Pusha T, Baby Keem, Lil Baby, Lil Durk, and others. It also included ‘No Child Left Behind,’ which appeared in a new Beats ad starring Sha’Carri Richardson. The Donda event also reportedly prompted the City of Atlanta to proclaim July 22 Kanye West Day.”
West was born in Atlanta where his mother worked as a professor at Morris Brown College in the 1970s. It was clear that he was going back to his roots and paying homage to his personal history by performing in Atlanta.
The New York Times reported, “West gave 5,000 tickets to Thursday’s listening session to faculty and students at historically Black colleges and universities in the city, including Morris Brown, Clark Atlanta, Morehouse and Spelman.”
Fans who attended the concert were gifted with posters that showed an image of the rapper’s mother along with the words, “Mom West was a remarkable woman and a role model who we all loved dearly and cherished. We are fortunate that our lives crossed paths.”