It's no secret that Kanye West wears his hometown on his sleeve. Yeezy and Chi-town are like, well, Yeezy and self-indulgent hubris: inseparable. Between songs like "Homecoming," Common's "Southside" (which features West) and, more recently, "Way Too Cold," listeners can find a whole anthology of serenades to the Chi.
Unfortunately, the city that raised a rap demigod has become synonymous with something else as of late: homicide. Like anyone living outside a vacuum, Kanye knows The Windy City has become a very dangerous place in the past few years. He dedicates so many bars to namedropping Chicago that it'd be almost criminal not to mention the city's recent scourge.
Chicago recorded 500 homicides in 2012, dozens more than New York, a metro three times its size. Just last weekend, as Easter festivities ramped up and wound down in Chicagoland, gun violence across the city left 25 wounded. The shootings occurred amid news that the homicide rate had fallen dramatically during the previous month. One step forward, a couple dozen back.
As the violence spiked in late 2011, the multi-platinum rapper dedicated a song off Watch the Throne to the issue. Of course, that wasn't the first time he's given mention to Chicago's history of violence. Not even close.
Peep our Guide to Kanye References about the Violence in Chicago for a glimpse into the hip-hop icon's pain.