Lana Del Rey recently released two new singles (and an accompanying supersized video) from her upcoming album, the brilliantly titled “Norman Fucking Rockwell:”, “Fuck it I love you” and “The greatest.” They’ve both been hailed, as well, the greatest–in particular ”The greatest,” a wistful ballad, has been showered with critical praise. The song, a fuzzy take on current, apocalyptic times, closes with a spoken word segment, including the line “Kanye West is blonde and gone.” But what did Del Rey (born Elizabeth Grant) mean by the lyric?
In a new interview with New York Times pop music reporter Joe Coscarelli, Del Rey was asked if she had heard anything from West since the song’s release. “No,” Del Rey said. “Gratefully, no. Here’s the thing: I don’t want to elicit a response. You never feel better for having written something like that.”
“But Kanye just means so much to us,” she continued. “And by the way, I’m grateful to be in a country where everyone can have their own political views. I’m really not more of a liberal than I am a Republican — I’m in the middle. But it was more like the mood and the vibe around, Yo, this man is the greatest! Really? The greatest? It hurt me. Did I have to say anything? No. But it’s more just a line that represents a lot of things.”
There are now calls on Twitter to “radicalize” the “centrist” musician.
Del Rey has a long history with West. She performed at his rehearsal dinner at the Palace of Versailles before his famed wedding to Kim Kardashian in 2014, playing her hits “Blue Jeans,” “Summertime Sadness,” and “Young and Beautiful.” West even proposed to Kardashian while an orchestra covered “Young and Beautiful”–which, when placed in the context of Kardashian’s image-focused career, is a little on the nose.
But Del Rey and West’s relationship has since soured. Last October, Del Rey commented on one of West’s MAGA hat selfies on Instagram (which lead to a fever dream-like feud with Azealia Banks), writing that “Trump becoming our president was a loss for our country but your support of him is a loss for the culture. I can only assume you relate to his personality on some level. Delusions of grandeur, extreme issues with narcissism.”
“If you think it’s alright to support someone who believes it’s OK to grab a woman by the pussy just because he’s famous-then you need an intervention as much as he does.”