Kanye West Surprise-Drops a Tribute to His Late Mother, “Donda”

Where did you think Kanye West got his skills from? Kanye West released a surprise track honoring his late mother, Donda West, on what would’ve been her 71st birthday, July 12. West tweeted the track on Sunday, along with a music video comprised of various clips. “Donda” actually starts off with a snippet of her quoting KRS-One’s “Sound of da Police.” West comes in at about 1:30. “There can never really be justice on stolen land,” she recites the powerful lines. “Are you really for peace and equality? Or when my car’s hooked up — know you wanna follow me? Your laws are minimal because you won’t even think about the real criminal. This has got to cease ‘cause we been getting hype to the sound of the police.” Donda West was an English professor for 31 years. She died in November 2007 from surgery complications.

West’s addition to the track is pretty slim and reads more like his campaign manifesto than a tribute to his mom. “The Devil is using you / Confusing you / Our job is to understand who is who / Righteous indignation / In this nation / We gon start a revolution in this basement,” he raps. West’s wife, Kim Kardashian-West, also celebrated his mom’s birthday by posting a full-length video of Kanye and Donda rapping “Hey Mama” together. You can see a clip in the “Donda” music video, but KKW hooked it up with the original, below.

Kanye West Surprise-Drops a Tribute to His Mother, “Donda”