Who is Kanye West’s father?

RAY West stayed out of the spotlight throughout his son’s career.

In the Netflix documentary jeen-yuhs: A Kanye West Trilogy, fans get to know the soon-to-be-divorced rapper’s father a little better.

Kanye's father, Ray West, is a 73-year-old photographer and philanthropist from the Dominican Republic


Kanye’s father, Ray West, is a 73-year-old photographer and philanthropist from the Dominican RepublicPhoto credit: Getty

Who is Ray West?

Ray West was born on August 28, 1949.

He was known for his career as a photographer before his son Kanye found fame as a critically acclaimed rapper.

Ray was one of the first black photojournalists at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and worked with Maya Angelou and Ronald Reagan.

He was also a member of the Black Panther Party in the 1960s and 70s.

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According to The Washington Post, Ray opened a Christian bookstore in Maryland in 2006.

The Good Water Store and Cafe sells bottled water, with proceeds going to the local community, the UN’s Water For Life initiative and the Kanye West Foundation.

He now lives in the Dominican Republic.

Kanye told the BBC in 2013 that his father once moved into a homeless shelter “not because he was homeless, but because he wanted to help the ex-drug addicts, he wanted to be that close”.

How is Ray’s relationship with Kanye?

When Ray and Donda West divorced in 1980, Kanye moved to Chicago but spent summers with his father in Washington DC.

Kanye was very close to his mother Donda up until her death, but at the end of his 2019 music video “Follow God,” Kanye revealed, “It took me 42 years to realize that my dad was my best friend.”

In July 2020, at a presidential campaign rally, Kanye claimed his father wanted to have an abortion, but they still seem to have a strong bond.

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Ray exits a car in Paris in 2014, the year Kanye married Kim Kardashian


Ray exits a car in Paris in 2014, the year Kanye married Kim KardashianPhoto credit: AFP

What does Kanye say about Ray in his music?

Kanye’s Track Champion from his 2007 album Graduation gives an insight into Ray’s varied work and how he nurtured Kanye.

Kanye rapped, “I’m not saying we were from the projects/ But every time I wanted to put away or deposit/ my dad said, “If you see clothes, close your eyelids/ We were kind of like Will Smith and his son / In the film I’m not talking about the rich…

“Cause every summer he gets a/ Brand new crazy scheme to get rich / And I don’t know what he’s done for money / But he’ll send me back to school with a new wardrobe.”

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Kanye also opened up about his relationship with Ray in his Billboard Music Award-winning track Father Stretch My Hands, hinting that they didn’t always get along well.

The lyrics include, “I yelled at my dad/He told me it’s not Christian” and “I tried to talk to my dad/Give him some advice/He starts spazzing on me/Me start spazzin’ back/He said, ‘That’s not Christlike’.”

https://www.the-sun.com/entertainment/4805026/who-kanye-wests-father-ray-jeen-yuhs/ Who is Kanye West’s father?

Aila Slisco

Aila Slisco is a Dailynationtoday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Aila Slisco joined Dailynationtoday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: ailaslisco@dailynationtoday.com.

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