14 'Life of Pablo' Collabs, From Kid Cudi To Caroline Shaw
Kanye West might not have a lot of "Real Friends," but he does have a boatload of artist collaborators on Life of Pablo, his latest and most recent album, which he sneak-dropped at the end of his Saturday Night Live performance on Feb. 13. The highly anticipated album has 18 tracks, and only five of those songs don't rock the name of an artist in parentheses after the title. On Pablo, West seems to have collaborated with everybody from The Weeknd to Rihanna to Frank Ocean, and the anticipation to hear what he created with these artists was enough to make any hip hop fan sign up for a Tidal subscription and buy the album ASAP.
The following is a list of all of the artists that West collaborated with while making The Life of Pablo — and while some are pretty obvious choices (West and Rihanna are already BFFs), others (4-year-old Natalie Green?) don't necessarily make the most sense. Yet they all somehow came together to make one of the most intriguing albums of the year so far, so take a look at what each person contributed to West's newest, and perhaps most eclectic ever, record.
1. The-Dream On "Ultralight Beam"
Years ago, West collaborated on this rapper's song, "Walkin' on the Moon," for his album, Love vs Money. The-Dream is a songwriter as well as a singer, and is partly responsible for songs like Britney's "Me Against The Music", Rihanna's "Umbrella", and Beyonce’s "Single Ladies (Put A Ring on It)," so it's no wonder West recruited him for this new track
2. Kirk Franklin On "Ultralight Beam"
This Grammy-winning gospel singer has a feature in "Ultralight Beam" as well. From the above Instagram, he seems to understand that West is far from perfect, but that it's not his duty to judge him for his actions.
3. Kid Cudi On "Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1"
Kid Cudi is an actor and rapper who hooked up with West after his song "Day N Nite" got super famous. He was signed to West's label, then left for Universal, but it appears there's no bad blood, since he appeared on this song.
4. Desiigner On "Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 2" And "Freestyle 4"
The first Brooklyn-based rapper signed to Yeezy's label, Desiigner became a man of note after his single "Panda" hit 1.5 million listens on Soundcloud. I can't wait to see what he has up his sleeve next.
5. Rihanna On "Famous"
West and Rihanna have been working together for years with songs like "FourFiveSeconds", "All of the Lights", and "Run This Town". This new song, though, has people all salty because in it, West claims he made Taylor Swift famous. Controversy aside, it's great to see Rih on the track.
6. Young Thug On "Highlights"
According to an interview with Rolling Out, West called this Atlanta-based rapper "Bob Marley." I actually hadn't heard of Young Thug, but after reading said interview, I'm hooked/obsessed/in love and so should you.
7. Chris Brown On "Waves"
When everybody (cough, cough, Wiz Khalifa) was giving Kanye Twitter flak for supposedly stealing the term "Wave" from Max B, Chris Brown reportedly posted an image of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video where the artist was sitting in a theater eating popcorn and wrote "me all day today," before seemingly deleting the post. Was it done possibly because he was in the album on a song called "Waves"? Who knows.
8. The Weeknd On "FML"
West and the guy behind "Can't Feel My Face" previously collaborated on the production of "Tell Your Friends" from The Weeknd's album Beauty Behind the Madness. It's nice to see these talented artists working together again.
9. Ty Dolla $ign On "Real Friends" And "Fade"
"Real Friends" with Mr. Dolla $ign has been out for awhile, but that doesn't make it any less exciting. It's equally exciting to see him in another track fans haven't heard yet, "Fade." This West coast rapper once sang background vocals on Yeezy's ode to his daughter, "Only One".
10. Frank Ocean On "Wolves"
It looks like Frank Ocean and West got my fan emails requesting another collaboration after "No Church in the Wild". Dreams really do come true. This single originally debuted with Sia and Vic Mensa, but it seems they got replaced in the album cut.
11. Caroline Shaw On "Wolves"
West noticed this classical triple threat (violinist, composer, singer) at a concert for her experimental group, Roomful of Teeth. They then performed his song "Power" at a 2015 DNC fundraiser for President Obama, so you can expect pretty dope things on "Wolves."
12. Andre 3000 On "30 Hours"
In a perfect world, Outkast would be back. But in this world, you get Andre 3000 and West collaborating again. The last time was on Fonzworth Bentley's song "Everybody", which was great, so I have high hopes for "30 Hours."
13. Kendrick Lamar On "No More Parties In L.A."
This is another song that West released in anticipation of the album. In my eyes, Lamar can do no wrong, so for me, this song is a highlight of the album. Kendrick and West have collaborated before, when the Compton rapper joined West on his Yeezus tour.
14. Post Malone On "Fade"
Post Malone is a producer/singer/rapper who got all sorts of fame after his song "White Iverson." He's young (20), and "Fade" is definitely just the beginning for him.
With all these super talented artists on-board, there's no doubt Yeezy's album will be a massive hit.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article originally listed Carole King as one of the collaborators in the headline, but Ms. King's manager Sherry Kondor has since stated that, "Carole did not collaborate with Kanye on the record."