Kanye West to Apple’s Cook: Pay Performers Like You Paid for Beats
Rapper, producer, entrepreneur, and perennial culture commentator Kanye West has had a lot to say about Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) lately. West is a well-known fan of Apple’s products and has made no secret of his admiration for company co-founder Steve Jobs. The outspoken artist has compared himself to Jobs on multiple occasions, including in an interview with The New York Times last year in which he called himself the “Steve [Jobs] of Internet, downtown, fashion, culture.”
West has been sharing his latest views on Apple at the ongoing Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, an annual event for the advertising industry. While West had plenty of complimentary things to say about Apple and its recently announced acquisition of Beats Electronics, the rapper also took issue with how Apple compensated artists that performed at the company’s iTunes Festival earlier this year. Apple’s iTunes Festival was held in the U.S. for the first time this year as part of the annual SXSW (South by Southwest) Music, Film, Interactive festival. The event was previously held exclusively in the UK where it began in 2007.
In a Cannes Lions Festival panel discussion that included venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz co-founder Ben Horowitz and marketing firm Translation founder Steve Stoute, West elaborated on comments he previously made about Tim Cook during his Yeezus tour. “And I know you might have heard about this thing where I was on stage, like calling Tim Cook out and saying why do you have these guys performing at South by Southwest and you don’t want to pay them,” said West via Bloomberg. “You just want to give us extra space on the iTunes page and stuff.”