Kanye Says Give Chris Brown 'A Break'

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Kanye West has made his reputation as a controversial quote machine, and his new comments defending Chris Brown over his alleged assault on girlfriend Rihanna are sure to cause a stir.
During a taping of VH1's 'Storytellers,' West asked the crowd, "Can't we give Chrisa break? ... I know I make mistakes in life." He was referringto R&B singer Chris Brown, who was arrested on the night of theGrammys on suspicion of beating his girlfriend Rihanna.
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Kanye Mr. Humble' West

    "Can't we give Chris a break? ... I know I make mistakes in life." -- on Chris Brown's alleged assault on Rihanna, and the media coverage surrounding it

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    "Please i beg you, give me a break!!!!! Pleeeeeeeeeeeeease!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let me be great!!! Who have i hurt so bad that they want to destroy me? Who have i ever spoke about so negatively? I just was speaking with our new president two days ago... And now this." -- disputing a false quote alleging he'd do bisexual porn

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    "I believe I am the greatest entertainer of this generation. I go neck-and-neck on Jay-Z and [Lil] Wayne as far as who's the best lyricist," Kanye West said in VIBE magazine's February issue.

    Lester Cohen, Wire Image

    "I am protecting my personal space since there are no laws to protect that for me," West said. "The fact that [a photographer] could get me arrested off a mere complaint, but I can't ask him to stop taking pictures of me is very lopsided." -- defending his recent scuffle with the paparazzi

    Gustavo Caballero, Getty Images

    "There were people who had the potential to do it but they went on vacation, so when Justin [Timberlake] went on vacation I made albums, and it just came out to be that." -- on Timberlake's supposed failure to become music's top dog due to a lack of new albums.

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    "I realize that my place and position in history is that I will go down as the voice of this generation, of this decade, I will be the loudest voice." -- quote from a Nov. 12 interview.

    Mike Marsland, Getty Images

    "It's me settling into that position of just really accepting that it's one thing to say you want to do it and it's another thing to really end up being like Michael Jordan." -- quote from a Nov. 12 interview.

    Noel Vasquez, Getty Images

    "If I was more complacent and I let things slide, my life would be easier, but you all wouldn't be as entertained. My misery is your pleasure."-- quote from a 2006 Rolling Stone interview

    Amy Sussman, Getty Images

    "We were obviously dealing with f------ idiots who didn't really have the capacity to really put on this show properly. They tried 2 give me a time slot were it was still light outside. I have a f------ light show dumb a---, it's not called glow in the dark for no reason squid brains." -- blaming the organizers for Bonnaroo problems.

    Jeff Kravitz, FilmMagic.com

    "Oh hell no! This video cost a million dollars! I had Pam Anderson, I'm jumping across canyons and s---! If I don't win, the awards show loses credibility." -- on losing at the 2006 MTV Europe Music Awards

    Damian Dovarganes, AP

In the same context, West earned loud applause with hisdeclaration: "Michael Jackson, amazing. Michael Phelps, amazing... He's a real f---in' person; he makes mistakes," referringto the champion swimmer's recent bong pipe brouhaha.
VH1 has cleaned up those comments a bit, and it alsoincluded West's less-popular follow-up observation: "O.J.Simpson, amazing. Is he not? What he did, when he did, what hedid. Was he not amazing though?"
But the comments will not make it to air when the episodepremieres on the lifestyle cable network Saturday.
The taping, which took place Feb. 13 at Sony Studios inLos Angeles, lasted three hours. The show's producers cut it to90 minutes, after getting network approval to expand theepisode from its usual one hour.
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Kanye West: Official 'Heartless' Video
Some of West's choicer comments ended up on the cuttingroom floor, but there's no political conspiracy afoot, saidexecutive producer Bill Flanagan.
"A lot of the stories that Kanye told went long," Flanagantold Reuters Thursday. "I tried to get to the essence of hiscomments."
One of hip-hop's most intriguing and outspoken stars, Westseems tailor-made for "Storytellers," in which artists playtheir songs in an intimate setting and share tidbits withaudience about how they were written.
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Kanye West Snapshots

    Kanye West attends the Metropolitan Opera's 125th anniversary gala at Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center New York, NY United States March 15, 2009 Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com To license this image (16612563), contact WireImage.com

    Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com

    Kanye West and Amber Rose attend the Metropolitan Opera's 125th anniversary gala at Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center New York, NY United States March 15, 2009 Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com To license this image (16612704), contact WireImage.com

    Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com

    NEW YORK - MARCH 15: Musician Kanye West and model Amber Rose attend The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala at The Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Loud/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kanye West;Amber Rose

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    NEW YORK - MARCH 15: Musician Kanye West attends The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala at The Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Loud/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kanye West

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    Kanye West and Amber Rose attend the Metropolitan Opera's 125th anniversary gala at Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center New York, NY United States March 15, 2009 Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com To license this image (16612702), contact WireImage.com

    Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com

    Kanye West attends the Metropolitan Opera's 125th anniversary gala at Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center on March 15, 2009 in New York City. The Metropolitan Opera's 125th Anniversary Gala Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center New York, NY United States March 15, 2009 Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com To license this image (16612698), contact WireImage.com

    Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage.com

    Musician Kanye West arrives with Amber Rose to attend the 125th Anniversary gala of the Metropolitan Opera in New York March 15, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES ENTERTAINMENT)

    Reuters

    Musician Kanye West arrives with Amber Rose to attend the 125th Anniversary gala of the Metropolitan Opera in New York March 15, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES ENTERTAINMENT)

    Reuters

    Musician Kanye West arrives with Amber Rose to attend the 125th Anniversary gala of the Metropolitan Opera in New York March 15, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES ENTERTAINMENT)

    Reuters

    Rapper Kanye West and Amber Rose attend the Metropolitan Opera 125th anniversary gala at Lincoln Center, in New York, on Sunday, March. 15, 2009. (AP Photo/Peter Kramer)

    AP

The idea behind "Storytellers" is that VH1 encourages theartist "to just keep talking," and producers in turn will"eliminate any 'gotcha' moments" that don't work, Flanagansaid.
During the taping, according to a Reuters reporter, Westwas aggrieved that Radiohead singer Thom Yorke had allegedlysnubbed him backstage at the Grammys five days earlier. Thathurt, West told the audience, because he idolizes the Britishband, and considers it one of his few creative rivals.
"So when he performed at the Grammys, I sat the f--- down,"West said.
In between his speeches, West found time to perform 14songs. Some, such as "Go Hard" and "Street Lights," will notappear on the episode. The final set list combines older tuneslike "Touch the Sky" and "Stronger," and tracks from his newalbum "808s and Heartbreak," including "Amazing" and "See YouIn My Nightmares."
Flanagan said he was "pretty delighted" with the way Westopened up to the crowd and took the whole project seriously.
Next up for "Storytellers" is a taping with resurrectedrock trio ZZ Top in Chicago in a couple of weeks, he said.
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2009-02-27 08:07:51