The College Dropoutby Kanye West
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.
- Release Date:
- We Don't Care
- Graduation Day
- All Falls Down
- I'll Fly Away
- Jesus Walks
- Never Let Me Down
- Get Em High
- Workout Plan
- The New Workout Plan
- Slow Jamz
- Breathe in Breathe Out
- School Spirit Skit 1
- School Spirit
- School Spirit Skit 2
- Lil Jimmy Skit
- Two Words
- Through the Wire
- Family Business
- Last Call
Performance CreditsKanye West Primary Artist
Tracie Spencer Background Vocals
Boys Choir of Harlem Vocals
Tony Williams 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,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 CreditsBurt Bacharach Composer
Marcus Fuller Engineer
B. Miller Composer
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
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
Mos Def Composer
Jason Rauhoff Engineer
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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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.
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.
Kanye has the realest CD of the year so far. As for the beats on the CD, the guy is amazing mixing music from everywhere to make a great hip-hop sound. One of my favorite CD's of all-time. Get this and listen to "Jesus Walks" and "Never Let Me Down".
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.
Absolutely fantastic!! LYRICS, BEATS, FLOW- I just love 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.
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.
I RESPECT HIS WORK AND HIM AS AN ARTIST. HE HAS AN EAR FOR MUSIC AND HE IS NOT TRYING TO BE A FOLLOWER.THE KID HAS THE AIR WAVES ON SMASH KEEP THEM DRUMS AND SAMPLES POPPIN,PRODUCERS RESPECT GOOD PRODUCERS WORK... PUEGUCCI
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.
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
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.
I didn't expect too much of this album, but in fact it is exceptional. The beats are sick and the rhymes complement the beats perfectly. The features of Talib Kweli, Jay-Z, etc add to the album as well.
Ha, I act like my opinion really counts, but to me, this is really album of the year.
Kanye West, one of the best producers in the world brings his beats to his new album college dropout and to me it is sick......got it on bootleg.
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.
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!!!!
the boy is holding it down! The album is relatively short, filled with hillarious skits. Very heavily sampled beats (as is Kanye's style)and heavy bass keeps the cd spinning. Nothing too new about the lyrics but he represents a new combination of undergroung and mainstream...only thing is barely any cussing. I don't know if he hates it, but he blanks his bad words out on the PA album. Still it adds to the effect. To hear the beats for yourself, check out the best one: School Spirit.
Kanye West is picking up right where Jay left off holding it down for Rocafella...this is a must get-NO BOOTLEGS, let the man eat.
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.
Ma i from the chi and he is reprsenting to the fullest. I mean all the beat's are hot and the lyrics are bangin it one of the best yet so there's only one word that can describes his work "Perfect"
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 !!!
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!!
The producing on the album is crazy. A CD with the instrumentals would even be good; his beats are crazy. He brings a style that we have not seen and his songs have good messages behind them. This is not your everyday album. In my opinion, the best of the ROC did his think. Every song is a hit. He shows that he can hold his own, and not only make hits for others, but make him for himself. Listen to the end of the last track where Kanye talks about his struggle in the game and how he finally made it. It's of the chain.
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!