Aziz Ansari Chats About His Friendship With Kanye West

Photo: Billy Farrell Agency/Shutterstock/REX
Aziz Ansari, Rosario Dawson, and Kanye West at a Costume Institute gala benefit after party in May 2011.
After his Netflix series Master Of None dropped last week, Aziz Ansari has been everywhere. Or maybe we just can’t stop thinking about the series? Same thing.
He’s also making publicity rounds, and in the latest episode of Bill Simmons’ eponymous podcast, the 34-year-old talked about the show, hosting Saturday Night Live, and surprisingly, his longtime friendship with Kanye West and Jay Z. In case you forgot, Ansari appeared in the two rappers’ video for the track Otis back in 2011.
Advertisement
“I was there for a lot of the Watch The Throne recording, which is one of the coolest things I’ve ever gotten to see. Just as a creative person, to see how those two guys were making this thing creatively,” he added, as noted by NME.
While Beyoncé’s private photographer rarely makes controversial headlines, Yeezy is another story. People love him or they hate him; he’s easily one of the most polarizing artists in the music businesses. Though often the image of West we’ve grown accustomed to is that of a man with a big ego, whether he can back it up is a matter to be settled among his legion of fans and mob of haters. Though Ansari has another perspective on the Life of Pablo rapper.
“He’s such an interesting person and there’s just this view of him that some people have of him that’s just… I don’t know,” Ansari said to the host. “He is that but he’s also this nice guy that I’ve met. He can be a very sweet guy.”
Ansari also shared an anecdote about how he was among the first people to hear West's critically acclaimed My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. “This is so fascinating to me. He was working on Twisted Fantasy, and there was a guy who comes in, he’s got two vintage Hermès suitcases — travel suitcases.”
After choosing his luxe luggage, and letting the messenger linger around, West got back to the matter at hand. Ansari explained, “The guy is still there, from some delivery service, and Kanye is like, ‘Hey, I want to play you something. Tell me which of these songs you like.'” That something was one of West's most celebrated albums.
Advertisement