Did Kanye Just Win Kanye vs. Kimmel?

I have to openly admit that in the last year or so, my heart has hardened to Kanye West. With the whole dating-a-Kardashian, assaulting paparazzi, comparing himself to Jesus situations all fresh in our heads, it was hard not to grow cold towards West, to forget how surprised and impressed we were when The College Dropout first came out or when we first listened to the touching song, “Hey Mama” off of Late Registration. But West’s appearance on Jimmy Kimmel did the one thing I thought impossible from Kanye: It surprised me.

Yes, West on Kimmel was the most refreshing, honest, and insightful interview I’ve seen in a long time, bar none. West was relaxed and open, and his insight on the music industry and fashion prejudices were on point. He knows what he sounds like in the media, but he also knows his own abilities and, for the first time in a long time, we got to see West as he might truly be, an extremely creative and driven person whose bravado allows him to push into different fields and genres and create as he sees fit. I remembered that West is an innovator, not just a braggart with a bad temper and weird taste in women.

So if you haven’t watched the interview yet, sit down and give it a try. You too might be surprised by how much West can tell us about the annals of two much discussed and controversial industries: fashion and music. Of course it took a crazy Twitter feud for Kanye West to show his true colors, but hey, at least it happened, right?

Written by Dale Neuringer