Time magazine almost had it right -- but Kanye West instead should have been named "Person of the Year."
Kanye's biggest hit in 2005 was not "Gold Digger" but "George Bush doesn't care about black people."
In addition, Kanye produced three of the finest recordings this year -- Common's Be, John Legend's Get Lifted (technically, an '04 release) and his own masterpiece, Late Registration.
"[Late Registration] is really important not just because it was successful this year, but 10 years from now they'll look back at what it did for the game," Kanye told MTV. "We put so much pain, blood, sweat, tears, time and money into it."Also, let's not forget his production assists this year: He blessed R&B joints for Leela James (the way soulful "It's Alright"), Keyshia Cole (the yearning ballad "You've Changed"), Jamie Foxx (the tranquil club bumper "Unpredictable") and Mariah Carey (the true standout song on the disc "Stay the Night").
And yes, Kanye can be an egoistical asshole. But so was the late Miles Davis. Get over it.
And yes, K-Weezy's eye for fashion sometimes leaves everyone blind -- not withstanding that dumb Christmas sweater he wore recently at a high school concert event (see above). Those tight jackets and car slippers he also wears are kinda gay, too. Hey, 'Ye . . . either fire your stylist or step your game up, bruh.
On the flipside, Kanye's love for his mama is endearing. Half of the rappers today need to show love for something other than bitches, grills and spinners. So I appreciate Kanye's love for his mama on records. These hip-hop toughies need to show a little vulnerability and introspectiveness in their music.
As far as Kanye's lyrical skills -- well, he is no Rakim, but Kanye's flow is no better or worst than YOUR favorite rapper in 2005.
In the end, when it comes down to the music and his contributions to hip-hop and pop culture -- Kanye did an exceptional job this year.
That's why you are going to hear his name get called over and over again at thr 48th Annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 6.
Will Late Registration win the coveted Album of the Year trophy at the Grammys?
"I'm gonna keep on trying to push the bar. I'm my own toughest critic, and I just wanna keep on bringing good entertainment to y'all. And at the end of the day that's what it's about: songs that are entertaining, interviews that stick with you and a nice outfit and that's it."Kanye West is a hip-hop genius.
Related: Read hip-hop journalist Tara Henley's recent interview with Kanye West right HERE.