Wednesday, June 15, 2005

A Multifaceted Pop Song

(above: a child soldier guards the diamond fields.)

Kanye takes on blood diamonds in "Diamonds From Sierra Leone"

Sample lyrics:

"See a part of me's sayin' keep shinin'. How, when I know what a blood diamond is?/ Though it's thousands of miles away, Sierra Leone connect to what we go through today/ Over here it's the drug trade, we die from drugs. Over there, they die from what we buy from drugs/ The Diamonds. The chains, the bracelets, the charms is/ I thought my Jesus piece was so harmless, till I seen a picture of a shorty armless, and here's the conflict/ It's in the black person's soul, to rock that gold. Spend your whole life tryin' to get that ice/ On a polo rugby you look so nice, how could something so wrong make me feel so right."

Kanye's press quote:

"When I first played the song for Q-Tip, he brought up the blood-diamonds. He started informing me," explains Kanye. "The very first thing I did was change the title of the song. From that point on, I wanted to do whatever I could to learn more and educate people about the problem. We came with the concept for the video and, of course, I couldn't wait for the opportunity to rap on the subject."