At a Saint Pablo Tour stop in L.A. last night, Kanye West gave a massively moving tribute to Kid Cudi, who recently publicly sought treatment for depression, suicidal urges and anxiety. "So Cudi, he in rehab right now, but he got a No. 1 song on the radio, and I want you to sing so he can hear it," Yeezy said.
Kanye took an instrumental from one of The Life of Pablo's most viscerally emotional tracks, "Waves," which features unfuckwithable mmmms and oooohs from Cudi, and sang Cudi's 2016-defining "beautiful morning" vocals from TLOP's "Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1" on top.
The effect was soul-warming and chilling at the same time. Check out a few alternate views:
"Cudi, you hear them?" 'Ye asked. The performance then segued into the equally positive "Touch the Sky," a Late Registration standout featuring another groundbreaking Chicago MC, Lupe Fiasco.
The No. 1 song Kanye referred to is "Frequency," which may only be No. 1 in Mr. West's heart right now—but it is fantastic! Oh: it's also No. 1, as in track one, on Mr. Mescudi's delayed Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin' album.
SNL cast member Pete Davidson is buddies with Cudi and told The Breakfast Club this week that the guy's "in really good spirits" in rehab. He also said, "I would’ve killed myself if I didn’t have Kid Cudi. ... I truly believe if Man on the Moon didn’t come out, I wouldn’t be here."
For more Yeezy, watch an episode of Fuse's digital miniseries The Kanye Effect, this one detailing his knack for talent-scouting and collaboration: