Kanye West promised that his new album would drop on Friday. Yet, when it didn’t show up on streaming services at midnight, fans had one question: ‘where’s ‘Donda’?’
Though Kanye West, 43, repeatedly said that DND: WTH CHLD (fka Donda: With Child fka DONA fka God’s Country) would drop July 24, when the clock struck midnight on the East Coast, Ye’s new album… wasn’t on any of the streaming services. To the surprise of no one who has watched Kanye, 43, over the past decade, the “Heartless” rapper didn’t deliver the album by its first advertised release date. Some fans were, rightfully, upset of being misled. Others were just resigned to the heartbreak. “Disappointed but not surprised, Kanye didn’t drop.” “can’t believe I even opened Spotify looking for Donda. how many times am I gonna put myself through this.” “where is donda?”
There were at least a few fans who were okay with this delay. In the wake of Kanye’s most recent public outbursts, which caused concern for his well-being, one listener said it was okay if Ye’s priorities were more on his mental health than his music. “If I’m being honest, I don’t want Kanye to drop that album tonight… if Donda comes out, I can’t sit there and listen to it happily knowing that he’s suffering and going thru it rn. I think it’ll be better if we get a happy album with a happy ye :,)
Though Kanye is notorious when it comes to blowing deadlines, this album’s delay seemed less to do with his creative vision and more due, as his wife Kim Kardashian, 39, pointed out, “his bi-polar disorder.” Days before DONDA‘s target release, Kanye held his first 2020 presidential campaign rally in South Carolina. During the July 19 event, he claimed he almost “aborted” his daughter North West, 7, that Harriet Tubman “never actually freed” any slaves, that his brain is “too big for [his] skull” and that he’d be “at peace” if Kim, 39, would divorce him. A day after the rally, Kanye went on a tweetstorm, claiming that Kim and Kris Jenner, 64, attempted to get him “locked up.” The following night, on July 21, Kanye would be at it again. He claimed that he’s been “trying to get divorced since Kim met with Meek [Mill] at the Waldorf(sic) over ‘prison reform.’” He also called his mother in law, “Kris Jong-Un.”
Kim responded to Kanye’s tweet with a statement on July 22. “As many of you know, Kanye has bi-polar disorder,” she said. “Anyone who has this or has a loved one in their life who does knows how incredibly complicated and painful it is to understand. I’ve never spoken publicly about how this has affected us at home because I am very protective of our children and Kanye’s right to privacy when it comes to his health.” She said that he’s been dealing with the loss of his mother and the “pressure and isolation that is heightened by his bi-polar disorder. … Those who are close with Kanye know his heart and understand that his words some times do not align with his intentions.”
The first indication that Kanye was going to release any music in 2020 came in May when Cinematographer Arthur Jafa prematurely revealed that Ye was working on a “forthcoming album” entitled God’s Country. In June, Kanye confirmed this when he released the video for “Wash Us In The Blood.” The album underwent a name change — twice — the following month. First, Kanye said the album would be called DONDA, after his late mother, Donda West. He later amended it to be Donda: With Child. Then, on July 22, he tweeted out a vowel-less tracklist, saying DND: WTH CHLD would be released “this Friday.”
However, delays go hand in hand with Kanye West albums. Most of his discography — The College Dropout, Late Registration, Graduation, The Life of Pablo, and last year’s Jesus Is King — all suffered delays of varying lengths.