It’s about time for a new Kanye album, and if his collaboration with Paul McCartney, “Only One,” is indication, we have a lot to be excited for.
West and McCartney have a long-standing mutual admiration, and began collaboration recently, starting with West’s single, “Only One,” released this New Year’s Eve. The song features McCartney on keyboard and West on vocals. It’s stylized as an auto-tune ballad, reminiscent of Kanye’s work with Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver) in My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’s “Lost in the World.” According to a press release, West and McCartney brainstormed together in a “small bungalow” in Los-Angeles, where McCartney improvised on the keyboard and Kanye “vocally sketch[ed] and shap[ed] ideas in a stream-of-consciousness riff.” The result was a ballad that connected generations.
Kanye explains that it his late “mom singing to me, and through me to my daughter.” Kanye’s mother, Dr. Donda West, was his best friend and confidante, and her death has deeply affected the performer. When listening to “Only One,” he remembered that the name his mother had chosen for him – Kanye – means “only one.” The song is much more than a sweet expression of love from father to daughter, but a true testament to the love between Kanye and his mother, as well. “Only One” can be streamed on Kanye’s website (www.kanyewest.com) or downloaded on iTunes.
As for Kanye’s next album? It’s rumored to feature Rihanna, James Blake, and Q tip, but this is Kanye we’re talking about, and anything is possible.
– Jenny Henderson