The artist formerly known as Kanye West is now just “Ye.”
Deadline announced that a Los Angeles judge approved the rapper’s petition to change his name to Ye, with no middle nor last name. According to reports, Ye filed the petition back in August 24, saying he was legally changing his name to his nickname for “personal reasons.”
It’s surprising that he’s not going by his most popular nickname, Yeezy, but at this point there’s no rhyme or reason to his decisions. He did name his 2018 album ye, so perhaps that was his way of telling the world to officially call him that.
The year that ye came out, he told radio host Big Boy that, according to him, “ye” is “the most commonly used world in the Bible, and said in the Bible it means ‘you.’” Looks like he took that literally.
The rapper mentions his now-former full name in third person on some of his songs, like in his infamous The Life Of Pablo track “Famous,” where he says, “For all the girls that got dick from Kanye West/If you see ‘em in the streets give ‘em Kanye’s best.”
Is he just going to change the lyrics to “Ye” now or will he still call himself “Kanye West” in the songs? This’ll just give his (remaining) fans more reasons to say “I miss the old Kanye.”
There are many important reasons why someone would want and need a name change (e.g. trans people choosing their own name), but in this case, it seems a bit silly. But Ye is hardly the only musician to change their name for a more outlandish one in recent years. Grimes, whose birth name was Claire Boucher, legally changed her name in 2018 to c (yes, in lowercase and italics) after the “speed of light,” but still kept her last name. She said she was encouraged by now-ex Elon Musk to do so after hating being called “Claire.”