If you had to pick a time to give everyone what they’ve been waiting months for, why not do it on music’s biggest night? It’s finally going down: On Sunday night, all the guys — [artist id="1225081"]T.I.[/artist], [artist id="1230523"]Kanye West[/artist], [artist id="1269"]Jay-Z[/artist] and [artist id="510062"]Lil Wayne[/artist] — will be as one for “Swagga Like Us” for the first time.
“I’m gonna wear a pink tuxedo!” Kanye West jokingly told Sway Friday afternoon in Los Angeles.
“No, I’m wearing a black tux,” he immediately clarified.
West hinted that his song-mates would be wearing similar outfits on the Grammy stage.
“Yeah, everybody is gonna be fresh,” Kanye promised. “Everybody is gonna be fresh to def. I mean, first of all, other than the fact that you got four — in my opinion — four of the freshest rappers making records right now. Aside from Jeezy, you got four of the freshest people consistently. When you see them, they look nice … they’re super fresh. So, it makes complete sense for us to get up there, do the ‘Swagga’ record at the Grammys and represent hip-hop. Represent black people, especially, in a really good light.
“And I definitely need to do something to come back from that Paris picture!” he added, referring to a photo that appeared on the Internet several days ago of him and his entourage in rather eccentric clothing during Paris fashion week.
West, who is also slated to perform with [artist id="1916698"]Estelle[/artist] on Sunday, said that Friday’s rehearsal for “Swagga” went down without a hitch.
“We was at practice today, and I was like, ‘Wow!’ ” Kanye beamed. “Just, like, the amount of egos that’s in the room. … Everybody just has to check their ego at the door. And I think Jay is the O.G., Frank Sinatra of all of us that everybody looked up to. Jay, at the end of the day, everybody that was in that room’s got a rap that sounded exactly like a Jay-Z rap. So, for us to be in the presence of Jay-Z, the greatest living rapper, he balances all the egos. Mugs don’t act crazy when they around Jay.
“Like, all the crazy stuff that I do — when I get around Jay, it ain’t gonna be like that,” the Grammy winner explained. “It’s almost like, I don’t want to put the term of, like, a ‘father figure’ or stuff like that, ’cause my father has helped to raise me to be respectful. But in a hip-hop sense, he controls a lot of things. He shuts down a lot of bullsh–, just on a bigger scale. He makes phone calls, and he makes it happen like it should happen. So he is a presidential-type character, really, in hip-hop.”
Even the rap president, however, couldn’t manage to connect with the Louis Vuitton Don, the King of the South and hip-hop’s Martian MC to make the video for “Swagga Like Us” that the song warranted.
“For some reason we could never get the video together,” Kanye said. “We had ideas for the video and everything, but it [wasn't] in God’s plan.”
West added that Sunday’s Grammy Awards will be especially important for T.I., who is scheduled to serve his prison sentence for felony gun charges next month.
“This time is a serious time for T.I.,” Kanye said. “I really feel sorry for the situation that he has to do that time. But it’s a moment for him to hit the Grammys. I don’t know what I can give away and what I can’t give away, but it’s really gonna be his moment that night. Him, Wayne, like a lot of the best rappers, it’s gonna be their moment that night. … So, obviously, it’s gonna be an overwhelming moment.”
Will Lil Wayne grab all the gramophones? Is Katy Perry going to tell her girl rivals to kiss off? Can Coldplay march off with a win? MTV News is all over the 51st Annual Grammy Awards, so stay tuned for interviews, analysis and more before, during and after the big night, Sunday, February 8.