Kanye West and JAY-Z officially reunite at 'Donda' listening event
BEHAR ANTHONY/SIPA

Kanye West and JAY-Z officially reunite at 'Donda' listening event

Kanye West took over the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Thursday night (July 22) to play his long-awaited album Donda for fans in the venue and streaming live on Apple Music.

There’s plenty to talk about, as with anything Ye does, but perhaps none more than Jay-Z reuniting with his on- and off-again collaborator and friend:

According to Hov’s longtime audio engineer and mixer Young Guru, the verse was written at the last minute:

Jay-Z’s verse signifies his first collaboration of any kind with West since they both appeared on Drake’s 2016 single “Pop Style” as The Throne, their collective name nodding to their universally celebrated joint 2011 album Watch The Throne. 

Donda is named after West’s mother, who died in November 2007 at 58 years old from complications following plastic surgery. The project was teased by the 22-time Grammy winner last summer days after he tweeted a song titled “Donda” on what would have been his mom’s 71st birthday.

Prior to Thursday’s full listening event, West debuted “No Child Left Behind” in a Beats commercial featuring Sha’Carri Richardson that aired during Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday (July 20), which might not have been a coincidental placement:

Though Donda was supposed to release at midnight Friday (July 23), the wait still isn’t over. However, once West’s 10th studio album does officially drop, it will be his first since his Grammy-winning Christian album Jesus Is King.

Megan Armstrong (@megankarmstrong) is a writer with previous work appearing in places such as Billboard, Bleacher Report, GQ and others. She's most interested in writing about people and how they live their lives, through the framework of music, entertainment and sports.

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