Kanye West Apologizes to Taylor Swift on Jay Leno Show
For the third time in 24 hours, Kanye West apologized for stealing Taylor Swift's thunder during the country singer's Best Female Video acceptance speech at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards. Taking crisis PR into his own hands Yeezy, walked on for a last-minute, unplanned sit-down interview on the opening night of 'The Jay Leno Show,' Leno's new prime time talk show. For months West and Rihanna had been tapped to perform alongside Jay-Z, helping promote the Brooklyn rapper's new 'Blueprint 3' track 'Run The Town.'
"First of all, let me say, thank you for honoring this commitment," Leno said setting the tone for the angle of the apology. West almost looked surprised entering Leno's stage to applause. "A lot of times people -- things happen -- they kinda back out at the last minute, or they have a publicist or someone call and say 'Oh I'm sorry, my client is not available.' Thank you for coming and doing this last minute in light of all the things going on. So, tell me about your day. Have you had a tough day?" Leno asked.
"Yeah, it's been extremely difficult," West started. "I just ... just dealing with the fact that I hurt someone or took anything away from a talented artist, or from anywhere. I only wanted to help people. My entire life I only wanted to give and do something that I felt was right and I immediately knew in this situation that it was wrong and it wasn't a spectacle or .... it was actually someone's emotions that I stepped on. It just was rude. Period. I like to be here and apologize to her in person."
"So when did yo know you were wrong?" Leno poked further. "Afterward? As you were doing it? Like when did it strike you, 'Uh-oh?"
"Like as soon as I gave her the mike back and she didn't keep going..." Kanye answered, nervously laughing then rubbing his head.
With Leno's new show being heavily promoted in the past weeks, the funnyman cut to the chase with West, touching on a soft subject. "Let me ask you something," Leno continued. "I was fortunate enough to meet your mom and talk with your mom a number of years ago. What do you think she would have said about this?"
"Um." Kanye began before a long pause. Leno interrupted the uncomfortable silence, asking, "Would she be disappointed in this? Would she give you a lecture?"
"Yeah. Obviously, I deal with hurt." Kanye began, struggling to find the right words. "And so many celebrities, they never take the time off. I have never taken the time off to really ... you know, I just ... music after music, tour after tour after tour. I'm just ashamed that my hurt caused someone else's hurt. My dream of what awards show were suppose to be caused ... and I don't try to justify it because I was just in the wrong. After this I need to take some time off and analyze how I'm gonna make it through the rest of this life, how I am going to improve, because I am a celebrity and that is something I have to deal with. If there is anything I could do to help Taylor in the future or help anyone, I'd like to. I wanna live this thing, but it's hard sometimes." We can only hope for a country meets hip-hop collaboration in the future.
The Leno sit-down proved crucial for both Leno and West, who after last Sunday's VMA outbust was escorted out by event security and continually booed whenever his name was mentioned in a nomination during the remainder of the award show. For Leno, it gave the veteran comedian the scoop on the week's most controversial entertainment story, and most likely, high ratings for Leno the rest of the week.
For West it was a BIG step forward in emotion. For someone who couldn't even formally apologize to disappointed fans for starting two and half hours late at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival two years ago, this apology showed that maybe the Chicago-bred rapper was learning what it meant to be the bigger person, and not just when it comes to selling albums.