Blame Game

Album: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010)
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Songfacts®:

  • This John Legend featured song finds West doling out blame over a deteriorating relationship. It samples the melancholy piano groove from cult electronic musician Aphex Twin's 2001 cut "Avril 14th."

    According to Aphex Twin, aka Richard D. James, West and his team approached him about the sample, then cut him out of the equation. "Is it a sample?" he asked Pitchfork. "I actually don't know what it ended up being in the end, I'm so slack. I know that he tried to f-----g rip me off and claim that he'd written it, and they tried to get away with not paying."

    "I was really helpful, and when they first sent it to me," James continued. "I was like, 'Oh, I can re-do that for you, if you like,' because they'd sampled it really badly and time-stretched it and there was loads of artifacts. I was like, 'I'll just replay it for you at that speed if you want.' And they totally didn't even say 'hello' or 'thanks,' they just replied with, 'It's not yours, it's ours, and we're not even asking you any more.'"
  • The song was co-produced by DJ Frank E (real name Justin Franks), who is an American DJ and record producer from Denver, Colorado. Frank E's résumé also includes production credits for Madonna, Flo Rida, T-Pain, Chris Brown, Travie McCoy, Sean Kingston, Nelly Furtado, Justin Bieber, B.o.B, Eminem and Enrique Iglesias. There are other names as well but we guess you get the idea that he has an impressive CV.
  • The song features a cameo from Chris Rock. The American comedian told The New York Times that he jumped at the opportunity as soon as the collaboration was presented to him. "I did that quicker than I read scripts that they offer me money to do," he said. "I thank [Kanye] so much it probably freaks him out. Especially at this late date, to get on something, the album of the moment, that stuff is priceless. You can't put a price tag on that. I felt invigorated by it. I've still got my fastball."
  • Other rap songs Rock has previously appeared on include Ol' Dirty Bastard's joint "Recognise," off his 1999 N---a Please record and Ludacris' track "Everybody Hates Chris' off his 2008 album, Theater of the Mind.

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