It has been nearly nine years since Kanye West lost his mother Donda, whom he named his creative agency after, and the rapper continues to feel the loss, penning a tribute to her on Twitter on Tuesday (July 12), what would have been her 67th birthday. “Nori asked if the airplane could take her to heaven to see you for your birthday, I love you mom,” he wrote, sharing his daughter’s innocence with the world.
West has long let his mother’s death influence his art, releasing 808s & Heartbreak a year after, a landmark album with respect to sorrow and emotion as primary hip-hop themes, and collaborating with Paul McCartney in 2014 for “Only One,” a song that West says is a tribute to his daughter North sung to Kanye from the perspective of his late mother. What’s more, Kanye is developing a video game for mobile users that features his mother as the main character, users being tasked with helping her arrive at heaven’s gate. The game, which is also titled “Only One,” received its first official trailer last month, after Kanye previewed it at his Madison Square Garden fashion show/album release event in February.
Though Kanye’s music has taken on a different personal influence since he’s married Kim Kardashian and become a father twice over, his very tribute tweet colored more by affection for North than anything else, the loss of his mother continues to be an important creative and personal turning point for him. Read his tweet up above, which is accompanied by a picture of Kanye and Donda.
By Ted Simmons