Kanye Omari West (born June 8, 1977) is an American recording artist, record producer, film director and fashion designer from Chicago, Illinois.
West first gained prominence as a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records; here he achieved recognition for his work on Jay-Z's 2001 album The Blueprint, as well as hit singles for musical artists including Alicia Keys, Ludacris, and Janet Jackson. His style of production originally used high-pitched vocal samples from soul songs incorporated with his own drums and instruments. Later productions saw him broadening his musical palette and expressing influences encompassing '70s R&B, baroque pop, trip hop, arena rock, folk, alternative, electronica, synthpop, and classical music.
West released his debut album The College Dropout in 2004; his second album Late Registration followed in 2005. Later albums include Graduation in 2007, 808s & Heartbreak in 2008, and My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy in 2010. West released a collaborative album, Watch the Throne with Jay-Z in 2011, which is the duo's first collaborative album.