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Kanye West Plays Three Songs, Wears MAGA Hat, Rants About Trump on 'SNL'

Lil Pump, Kid Cudi, Teyana Taylor, Ty Dolla $ign, and 070 Shake all showed up, but the evening will probably be remembered for West's testy, characteristically bizarre monologue.
Image via screenshot

Kanye West was the musical guest on last night's season premiere of SNL. He played three songs: "I Love It" with Lil Pump, an unreleased track called "We Got Love" with Teyana Taylor, and, in place of the show's usual cast-led send-off, "Ghost Town" with Kid Cudi, Ty Dolla $ign, and 070 Shake.

The performances were overshadowed, however, by West's unaired post-credits monologue, parts of which were captured by Chris Rock on Instagram. Still wearing the Make America Great Again hat that he had on during the "Ghost Town" performance, West insisted that the Democratic Party planned "to take the fathers out the home and promote welfare," a conflation of two baseless right-wing talking points. With the room all but silent, West went on: "So many times I talk to a white person about this and they say, 'How could you like Trump? He’s racist.' Well, if I was concerned about racism I would’ve moved out of America a long time ago." Rock can be heard laughing and whispering "my God" behind the camera as two or three audience members clap, a few jeer and boo West, and the SNL cast shuffles uncomfortably in the background. One eye-witness who spoke to Variety said that "the entire studio fell dead silent."


Desto Dubb also captured some of West's speech in an Instagram Live video. "Follow your heart, stop following your mind. That's how we're controlled," West said.

Two of West's performances are up on official SNL channels already. For "I Love It," the first song of the night, West dressed as a bottle of Perrier and Lil Pump dressed as a bottle of Fiji water. The two seemingly tried to censor parts of the song, changing the opening hook to "You're such a freaky girl, I love it." Plenty of profanity slipped through anyway though.

"We Got Love," which leaked earlier this year, seemingly included a voice memo from Lauryn Hill.

The "Ghost Town" performance isn't up on the NBC website yet, but you can watch some shaky, phone-shot footage of the performance below. We'll update the piece if and when an official video hits YouTube.

Last week, West wrote on Twitter that his ninth studio album, Yandhi, would come out on Saturday. It hasn't materialized yet.

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