The College Dropout [Explicit Lyrics]

( 37 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Brett Johnson
Kanye West's cohesive debut, The College Dropout, proves that some of the best hip-hop is rooted in the reality of everyday struggle and not gangsta gunplay fantasy. West, the Chi-town producer-cum-rapper who's crafted hits for Alicia Keys, Ludacris, Jay-Z, and fellow Windy City vet Twista, centers his disc on a familiar rags-to-riches motif, but like Will Smith before him, he adds his own black middle-class sensibility to it. West thumbs his nose at the old teachers who doubted him ("We Don't Care"), recalls smoking weed while on break at the Gap ("Spaceship/Slaveship"), and pokes fun at all the college-educated flunkies who didn't follow their dreams ("School ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Brett Johnson
Kanye West's cohesive debut, The College Dropout, proves that some of the best hip-hop is rooted in the reality of everyday struggle and not gangsta gunplay fantasy. West, the Chi-town producer-cum-rapper who's crafted hits for Alicia Keys, Ludacris, Jay-Z, and fellow Windy City vet Twista, centers his disc on a familiar rags-to-riches motif, but like Will Smith before him, he adds his own black middle-class sensibility to it. West thumbs his nose at the old teachers who doubted him ("We Don't Care"), recalls smoking weed while on break at the Gap ("Spaceship/Slaveship"), and pokes fun at all the college-educated flunkies who didn't follow their dreams ("School Spirit"). His flow may not be as polished as Jay-Z's, but West has just as much zeal, honesty, and wit. On "Through the Wire," the radio smash featuring one of his trademark sped-up soul samples -- this time of Chaka Khan's "Through the Fire" -- the charismatic rapper chronicles his ascent up the hip-hop A-list after a near-fatal car crash. Yet what makes that single and the entire disc so dazzling isn't just West's clever storytelling but his soulful, full-bodied production. Amid the strident bass shuffle of the inspirational "Jesus Walks" he adds a gospel tinge by employing the Harlem Boys Choir, and throughout the disc, he underscores the dramatic sweep and emotional edge to his raps by incorporating the work of violinist Miri Ben-Ari, who fiddles hip-hop beats. The College Dropout is a must-hear lesson in turning personal triumph into banging hip-hop with universal appeal. West may not have that degree, but The College Dropout makes him the leader of hip-hop's new school.
All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
Producer Kanye West's highlight reels were stacking up exponentially when his solo debut for Roc-a-Fella was released, after numerous delays and a handful of suspense-building underground mixes. The week The College Dropout came out, three singles featuring his handiwork were in the Top 20, including his own "Through the Wire." A daring way to introduce himself to the masses as an MC, the enterprising West recorded the song during his recovery from a car wreck that nearly took his life -- while his jaw was wired shut. Heartbreaking and hysterical "There's been an accident like Geico/They thought I was burnt up like Pepsi did Michael", and wrapped around the helium chirp of the pitched-up chorus from Chaka Khan's "Through the Fire," the song and accompanying video couldn't have forged his dual status as underdog and champion any better. All of this momentum keeps rolling through The College Dropout, an album that's nearly as phenomenal as the boastful West has led everyone to believe. From a production standpoint, nothing here tops recent conquests like Alicia Keys' "You Don't Know My Name" or Talib Kweli's "Get By," but he's consistently potent and tempers his familiar characteristics -- high-pitched soul samples, gospel elements -- by tweaking them and not using them as a crutch. Even though those with their ears to the street knew West could excel as an MC, he has used this album as an opportunity to prove his less-known skills to a wider audience. One of the most poignant moments is on "All Falls Down," where the self-effacing West examines self-consciousness in the context of his community: "Rollies and Pashas done drive me crazy/I can't even pronounce nothing, yo pass the Versacey/Then I spent 400 bucks on this just to be like 'N*gga you ain't up on this'." If the notion that the album runs much deeper than the singles isn't enough, there's something of a surprising bonus: rather puzzlingly, a slightly adjusted mix of "Slow Jamz" -- a side-splitting ode to legends of baby-making soul that originally appeared on Twista's Kamikaze, just before that MC received his own Roc-a-Fella chain -- also appears. Prior to this album, we were more than aware that West's stature as a producer was undeniable; now we know that he's also a remarkably versatile lyricist and a valuable MC.
Rolling Stone - Jon Caramanica
1/2 His ace in the hole is his signature cozy sound -- dusty soul samples, gospel hymns, drums that pop as if hit for the very first time.
Entertainment Weekly - Michael Endelman
West delivers the goods with a disarming mix of confessional honesty and sarcastic humor, earnest idealism and big-pimping materialism. [A-]

1/2 His ace in the hole is his signature cozy sound -- dusty soul samples, gospel hymns, drums that pop as if hit for the very first time.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/10/2004
  • Label: Roc-A-Fella
  • UPC: 602498617397
  • Catalog Number: 000203002
  • Sales rank: 22,477

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Intro (0:19)
  2. 2 We Don't Care (3:59)
  3. 3 Graduation Day (1:22)
  4. 4 All Falls Down (3:43)
  5. 5 I'll Fly Away (1:09)
  6. 6 Spaceship - GLC (5:24)
  7. 7 Jesus Walks (3:13)
  8. 8 Never Let Me Down - J-Ivy (5:24)
  9. 9 Get Em High (4:49)
  10. 10 Workout Plan (0:46)
  11. 11 The New Workout Plan (5:22)
  12. 12 Slow Jamz (5:16)
  13. 13 Breathe in Breathe Out - Ludacris (4:06)
  14. 14 School Spirit Skit 1 (1:18)
  15. 15 School Spirit (3:02)
  16. 16 School Spirit Skit 2 (0:43)
  17. 17 Lil Jimmy Skit (0:53)
  18. 18 Two Words - Freeway (4:26)
  19. 19 Through the Wire (3:41)
  20. 20 Family Business (4:38)
  21. 21 Last Call (12:40)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Kanye West Primary Artist
Tracie Spencer Background Vocals
The Boys Choir of Harlem Vocals
Tony Williams Vocals
Consequence Vocals
Bosko Talk Box
Keith Slattery Keyboards
Terrence "T-Berry" Hardy Children's Voices
Beverly A. McCargo Vocals
Miri Ben-Ari Violin
Eric Johnson Guitar
Josh Zandman Piano
Ken Lewis Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Keyboards, Vocals, Sampling
Aisha Tyler Vocals
Diamond Alabi Isama Children's Voices
Thomassina Atkins Vocals
Candis Brown Vocals
Tarey Torae Vocals
Tiera Singleton Vocals
Kevin Shannon Vocals
James "JT" Knight Children's Voices
Brandi Kuykenvall Vocals
Lavel Mena Vocals
John Legend Piano, Vocals, Background Vocals
GLC Track Performer
Technical Credits
Burt Bacharach Composer
Marcus Fuller Engineer
B. Miller Composer
Eddy Schreyer Mastering
Cynthia Weil Composer
Cam Wilson Composer
Albert E. Brumley Composer
Andrew Dawson Engineer
Lauryn Hill Composer
Keith Slattery Engineer
Damon Dash Executive Producer
Shawn Carter Executive Producer
A. Franklin Composer
Miri Ben-Ari Arranger, Producer
Carlisle Young Engineer
Kanye West Composer, Producer, Executive Producer
Anthony Kilhoffer Engineer
Kareem "Biggs" Burke Executive Producer
L.D. Harris Composer
C.C. Mitchell Composer
Evidence Producer
Kyambo "Hip Hop" Joshua Executive Producer
Darcell Lawrence Financial Director
Tatsuya Sato Engineer
Tom Keane Composer
Dave Dar Engineer
R. Wilson Composer
Rich Balmer Engineer
Tim Morris Art Direction
Ken Lewis Instrumentation
Eugene Toale Engineer
Jacob Andrew Engineer
Michael Eleopoulos Engineer
Lauri Rowe Art Direction
Mike Godshall Art Direction
Francis Graham Engineer
Brent Kolatalo Engineer
Bobby Naugle Logo Design
Eric Duvauchelle Art Direction
Dante Smith Composer
Jason Rauhoff Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 37 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 37 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    You already...

    KNOW!!! Man, this album is both classic and timeless... When I first popped this CD in my player, I listened non stop from beginning to end, even through the great skits (R.I.P Berni Mac).... The production, content, and creativity behind this album was immaculate and will certainly go down in my top 5 albums of all time... Thankfully Kanye has not failed to deliver on his 2 follow up albums... Classic.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Going Back to School

    Wonderful Histoy lesson from Baby Boomer who remember the 50's & 60's. When my children introduced me to this message I knew Mr. West had been properly EDUCATED !!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Buy IT!

    Its a fun cd! You can dance to it and you can relate to it. This cd really shows who Kanye West is. It seems like he put alot into this album. It orignal contray to popular delief. Buy it.You can dance at a party with or just have a good time listening to it. He has many featured artists. Not a cd that you should listen to with children.Kanye West is Kanye West, and this is very evident in these songs.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Inspirational Hip Hop

    The College Dropout combines Kanye's hip hop beats with soulful lyrics to create a unique sound that I can't get enough of. Its an album that I can relate to because he talks about real issues, not just thug life. I have always been a fan of hip hop and have been searching for songs the flow and have meaning. I've had the album since it came out and it is still in my car, all the songs are stuck in my head and it really does not bother me. Even if you don't like rap, give this CD a chance, its different in the best of ways.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    True to his forte.

    Kanye West's "The College Dropout" has some incredible producing. The background music, vocals, and beat are quite impressive, while meshing together and keeping West's reputation as a producer. However, the actual rapping can be lacking, which is why this CD will appeal to those that are (no offence) less experienced with rap -those who think the overall "sound" of the songs makes the songs themselves good.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Best Rap CD Ever

    Before this cd, I never really liked rap. Now that Ive listened to it, its opened me up to so much more, along with entertaining me with the best album of the year. Great collaborations on this cd, and endless great songs.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Production is Ace, but no substance

    When first listening to this album, I was quite surprised at the great production. But then I noticed that Kanye had "ripped" some samples from Dr. Dre's 1992 album, The Chronic. Moreover, I think this is a fairly descent East Coast style Hip-Hop album with great grooves from Kanye's slick production. This album has been overrated by a large margin. It seems like every Hip-Hop fan automatically puts a new crave on some new Rap artist like Kanye. Kanye, you can say is just like 50 Cent from early 2003. I'd like to see West Coast Rap dominate again and even bring back the East/West coast rivalry from the mid-90's. Kanye West is a very talented rapper with a great career ahead. I only wish this album could have had more G-Funk style to have a change in sound; other than the bland pop-rap feel.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    New Horizons

    Now I have 2 rap cds, the first being the chronic with Dre and Snoop. I got intrigued from a Chicago Tribune review. I was hooked from the the first track. The yin/yang between wild sex and sincere god rap, plus the blue collar/hooked on credit ethos make this a cd you want to hear again and again. Sure there's some chaff, but there's also some righteous wheat from top to bottom. Even if you don't like the genre, it's time to open up.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    lnstant classic

    I think this was one of the best albulms I have ever heard, I like how he can take his experience in the everyday struggle and make it a great song. This album is a must hear. If you love great music you will love this album, my favoirte songon the album was "all falls down", because it is a song about a young lady who is in college an dhas no idea why she's there but won't dropout, to impress her family. Then in the same song he says how he is so selfconcious, and how he is a witness of the everyday struggle. Another one of my favorite songs is "the workout plan", I like this song because it make fun of people who try and get ith a superstar for his money. It also says how if ther gonna do that they should at least look good doing it.These ar some reasons why you should go get this album.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Best Album I have heard

    There honestly isn't a song on this album I don't like. The beats are some of the best I ever heard. West is the greatest producer in the game right now. Buy It!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Greatest CD in Hip-Hop =)

    Kanye West’s, College Dropout, is a hip- hop sensation!! Wonderful beats, great recording, causing me to re-play songs over and over again. His great messages sent out through the lyrics of his songs in this CD, make you think in many different ways. The other artists featured on College Dropout, are also just as moving as he is with his lyrics, such as Jay-Z, and Ludacris. The songs, “Family Business”, “I’ll fly away”, “Never Let Me Down” and “Breath in Breath out” (featuring Ludacris) are a few of my personal favorites. In this CD, West gives a new meaning to hip- hop, with his new beats and religious songs that no other artist can even attempt to compare to. If your looking for an actually touching, yet a good CD to play in your car or jam to, this is that CD. His songs are never ending with greatness, and even humorous skits that will have you laughing beyond the message he’s trying to put out there. GREAT CD!!! A must-have to add to you collection!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    great

    every song on this cd is great. not only our his beats good, his lyrcis our actually inspirational. Jesus Walks anyone? Dont buy other messed up rap. Kanye Wesy defines rap.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Pure Genius...

    Wow... This album has totally blown my mind!! Kanye West has proven to be the diamond in the rough with the best album of 2004. After hearing "Through The Wire" I truly believed he was going to flop like many other new MCs. But after sampling some of the tracks on the album I went out and copped it. College Dropout is well-organized and is devoid of any "crunk" filler. The guests Kanye rounded up for this album truly are a perfect match! For the first time ever, I believe Ludacris failed to enhance a track he's a guest on ("Breathe In Breathe Out") LOL. My fav tracks include "Jesus Walks", "Never Let Me Down", and "Get Em High." For any true hiphop fan, this a must purcase!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Kanye's CD Is Banging!!!

    "The College Dropout" is a real hip-hop CD with the perfect production and songs to it. My favorite Kanye West songs are "We Don't Care", "Jesus Walks", "All Falls Down", "Slow Jamz", "Through The Wire", and "The Workout Plan".

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    HIP-HOP IS BACK

    THE COLLEGE DROPOUT WAS SERIOUS. NOW WE NOW SOMEBODY THATS A GOOD PRODUCER AND RAPPER. ANOTHER HIP-HOP CLASSIC

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Best Rap Album of 2004

    This is one of the most innovative rap albums in along time. Kayne created a album that is amazing from start to finish (except all the skits). It's a welcome relief from all the one hit wonder rappers,that rely heavily on their production,that currently dominate the airwaves. Not only can Kayne produce great tracks but his rapping abilities and rhymes are solid.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Real Hip-Hop Is Back...Its About Time!!!!

    Finally someone has come to save Hip Hop from this crunk-filled music world we live in today. Super producer/rapper Kanye West tells stories of struggle, relationships with god, partying, education and enjoying life. West's College Dropout is one of the most complete Hip hop CD's in the last five years. His ability to mix and match samples from old dusty records with the newest sounds of keyboards and drum machines is incredible. However, West’s ability as a rapper shouldn't be pushed to the back burner. Kanye's lyrics may not please the typical commercial rap fan or club hopper but his lyrics are serious. West’s clever word play and metaphorical lines are placed strategically throughout this CD. I would suggest this CD to anyone who wants to hear what the rap game should sound like in the next few years. THANKS KANYE...I REALLY APPRECIATE WHAT YOU'VE DONE TO THE GAME. YOU'VE MADE IT SO I CAN RESPECT IT AGAIN.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A college degree doesn't make or break your God-given talent

    The newest edition to ROC-A-FELLA records, Kanye West's "The College Dropout" is one musical purchase you won't regret buying. This cd features the hit song "Through the Wire" (a remake of Chaka Khans "Through the Fire"). In the song, West talks about his near tragic car accident that required him to have reconstructive jaw surgery. His jaw was wired shut for six weeks. During this time, he forced himself to go to the studio and rap the lyrics to the song. His determination is evident when he states, "They can't stop me from rapping. I spit it through the wire, there's just too much stuff on my heart right now." Other hit songs include, "Slow Jamz" featuring actor Jamie Foxx and rapper Twista and "All Falls Down" featuring Sylenna Johnson. Kanye also exposes his religious side by talking about his need for Jesus, and social issues. Kanye definately feels that his near death experience is inspiration for him to educate youth. Dropping out during his first year of college, Kanye West definately shows that a college degree doesn't make or break your God-given talent. He does this by supplying humor, heart-stopping lyrics, and messages that will leave you thinking long after the song ends.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Kanyeezie...... you did it again, you a genius nucca.....

    Backpack rap meets mainstream hiphop....Incredible album and could be heard from track 1 till the end. Original, smooth, and headbopping too. Anyone hating on Kanye is probably broke anyway. West could be cocky at times but damn..... "Can we Live?"..... 5 mikes, shoulda been signed twice!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    THE ROC IS IN THE BUILDING

    KANYE WEST IS ON HIS WAY TO BEING ONE OF THE GREATEST PRODUCERS THE MUSIC INDUSTRY HAS EVER SEEN HE DOES ONE TRACK ON A JAY-Z ALBUM AND EVERYBODY COMES AFTER HIS SERVICES FOR PRODUCTION ON THEIR ALBUMS THE MAN IS GOING TO HAVE A LOT OF PLATINUM PLAQUES ON HIS WALL BEFORE HIS CAREER IS OVER AND DONE WITH AND IF YOU DON'T HAVE THIS ABUM YET YOU GOT TO BE TRIPPIN GO PICK UP ONE OF THE MOST ANTICIPATED OF THE YEAR

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 37 Customer Reviews