It’s hard to look back on Kanye West’s catalog and pick a qualitative best track, but when it comes to his classics, “All Falls Down” easily tops the list.
“All Falls Down” was released as the third single on Kanye West’s debut album, The College Dropout. The record features a chorus sung by Syleena Johnson, originally sampled in Lauryn Hill’s “Mystery of Iniquity.” It also got nominated for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration at the 47th Grammy Awards, and although it didn’t win, it certainly set a high standard for the music Kanye West would go on to release,
Along with many other songs on The College Dropout, “All Falls Down” exemplifies some of Kanye’s best lyrical storytelling and nostalgic, 808-filled production. From your everyday, full time college student, to the millionaires we see on our television, Kanye explores the insecurities we all deal with in terms of self-esteem and problematic material wealth that can potentially destroy everyone consumed by it. Through some of his most insightful lines, he freely confronts multiple controversial issues.
Drug dealer buy Jordan, crack head buy crack/ And a white man get paid off of all of that
It’s these ‘real talk’ verses that led many to admire him for bringing simplistic issues, dealing with many modern day middle class citizens, to the forefront of Hip-Hop. To this day, Kanye remains one of the most controversial artists around, yet despite this, he’s still an undeniable cornerstone in hip hop’s history.