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Kanye West and Paul McCartney Collaborate on ‘Only One’

Inez and Vinoodh

Apparently, Kanye West had to have the last word in 2014 — and it was a big one.

After months of rumors and just before the ball dropped last night on New Year’s Eve, Yeezus gifted us ‘Only One’ — the lead single from his upcoming seventh full-length featuring Paul McCartney. You can stream the track on West’s website or download on iTunes.

According to a press release, this is just the first of “several” collaborations with McCartney:

In early 2014, Paul McCartney and Kanye West first began working together in a small bungalow in Los Angeles. The process that would result in “Only One” began with a simple brainstorming session between the two: With McCartney improvising on the keyboards and Kanye vocally sketching and shaping ideas in a stream-of-consciousness riff.

When they played back the recording afterward, something remarkable happened. Kanye sat there with his family, holding his daughter North on his lap, and listened to his vocals, singing, “Hello, my only one . . . ” And in that moment, not only could he not recall having sung those words, but he realized that perhaps the words had never really come from him.

The process of artistic creation is one that does not involve thinking, but often channeling. And he understood in that moment that his late mother, Dr. Donda West, who was also his mentor, confidante, and best friend, had spoken through him that day.

“My mom was singing to me, and through me to my daughter,” he said, astonished.

The small group in the room kept listening: “Hello my Only One…just like the morning sun…you’ll keep on rising till the sky knows your name.”

To some, Kanye’s insight didn’t immediately register. But then he explained: The name Kanye, which his mother had chosen, means “only one.”

And then it dawned on everyone there: Something powerful and undeniable had occurred through the power of music and of letting go. A message had been passed down through generations.

No word on the title of the album or when we can expect it just yet.

Next: Paul McCartney + Kanye West Are Collaborating

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