Between all the hubbub over Britney Spears’ VMA comeback disaster and Tommy Lee and Kid Rock’s smackdown, someone’s got to make sure Kanye West gets his fair share of the spotlight. And who better to do that than the man himself?
West, who left the MTV Video Music Awards empty-handed Sunday night, has lashed out, claiming the network “betrayed” him and “exploited” Spears.
“They exploited Britney in helping to end her career,” West said Monday in an interview with New York radio station Z100. “When Britney was opening, near the end, I felt so bad for her. I said, ‘Man, it’s a dirty game. This game will chew you up and spit you out.’ ”
Despite his proclaimed sympathy for Spears, West was more than a little peeved that he was not called upon to open the show himself–or at least to perform on the main stage, as opposed to in a private suite.
“I wasn’t mad that I just didn’t win any awards,” West says. “For me, [MTV] made it seem like performing on the main stage was a bad thing, and the suites were just so great. It was my dream when I made ‘Stronger’ to open up the VMAs with a real power performance.
“And I just feel like I got betrayed by them,” the rapper continued. “They opened with Britney. They opened with Justin last year and let him close the show this year, and he had his own suite.”
In addition to his dismay over being confined to a suite, West was also upset about how his performance of “Good Life” was introduced by his “Touch the Sky” video costar Pamela Anderson.
While many men might have been pleased at such a lascivious intro from the buxom blonde, West is not among their ranks.
“I’m engaged, and I feel like it’s disrespectful to my relationship,” West said of Anderson’s remarks, which he claims MTV assured him would be in acceptable taste.
In retaliation, West has vowed never to work with MTV again and has already canceled a planned performance on TRL to promote his new album Graduation.
“I have a connection in the fans’ heart that the press can’t stop,” he said, intimating that he will succeed without any added promotional help.
That so-called connection with his fans should come in handy this week, as he and rival 50 Cent face off with new albums hitting stores Tuesday.
Fiddy has already vowed to retire from the music business if his third album, Curtis, fails to outsell West’s third album, Graduation.
Based on early reviews, the “Candy Shop” rapper may want to prepare for the worst. Critics are already heralding Graduation as another solid effort from West, while expressing significantly less admiration for Curtis.
Of course, with Kenny Chesney also releasing his new album, Just Who I Am: Poets & Pirates, on Tuesday, there’s a good chance both hip-hopsters may be in for some humble pie.