In an expansive new cover story interview for Esquire, Cudi speaks from the heart about a thrillingly wide variety of topics, including his mental journey and his time in rehab back in 2016. As writer Clover Hope notes in the piece, Cudi “had a stroke and was hospitalized” two weeks into rehab. Following this incident, Cudi is said to have spent several months in physical rehab. It wasn’t until the following year, according to the piece, that Cudi was given an encouraging sign that he “didn’t lose something” in the process.
“I proved to myself that I could do it,” Cudi told the publication when addressing the personal importance of a Broadway audition that year for a part that ultimately went to another actor, adding that he “needed that at the time.”
These days, Cudi is in a stronger place than ever, exuding a revitalized confidence that continues to serve as a source of inspiration and comfort for fans and fellow creatives alike. Credited as integral to the process of getting to this point, per the new interview, is therapy. Specifically, a therapist by the name of Nika is given a shout-out for both calming and challenging the artist when he’s needed it.
Worth noting here is that Cudi’s discussions for this new cover feature were conducted back in June. Somewhat surprisingly, tucked into the feature are a number of comments from Cudi about his then-current feelings regarding Ye. As widely reported, including quite recently, the two have seemingly severed their once-friendly relationship after Cudi found himself drawn into Ye’s public saga involving Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson earlier this year. Just last week (i.e. after the Esquire interview was conducted), Ye mocked the Rolling Loud bottle-throwing incident in a photoshopped New York Times headline that was seemingly shared in response to reports of Pete and Kim splitting.
Speaking with Esquire about where things stood at the time, Cudi minced no words and asserted it would take “a motherfucking miracle” for him and Ye to rekindled their friendship this time around. In fact, he doesn’t see it happening.
“I’m not one of your kids,” Cudi, who also said Ye’s “gon’ have to become a monk” for any rekindling to be possible, said. “I’m not Kim. It don’t matter if I’m friends with Pete or not friends with Pete. None of this shit had anything to do with me. If you can’t be a grown man and deal with the fact that you lost your woman? That’s not my fucking problem.”
These days, Cudi said, he doesn’t tolerate “wrong energies.” And when it comes to Ye, specifically, he says he’s seen people get repeatedly “burned by him” only to swiftly forgive him. Cudi also made a point to push back against the narrative that Ye “made” his career. While it was “really fucking awesome” to be enlisted for Ye’s 808s & Heartbreak, Cudi said Ye “did not come and pluck me out of Applebee’s or the Bape store.”
Also getting a mention here is Drake, who very publicly brought an end to his own feud with Ye and even performed with him as part of the Free Larry Hoover Benefit Concert. “With all due respect, I’m not Drake, who’s about to take a picture with him next week and be friends again, and their beef is squashed. That’s not me,” Cudi said.
For the full Cudi x Esquire feature, which also sees Cudi speaking candidly about whether he sees himself continuing to rap into old age and his final exchange with the late Virgil Abloh, hit this link.
Entergalactic, meanwhile, is set to launch on Netflix on Sept. 30. In the animated story, Cudi voices the main character, Jabari, and is joined in the voice cast by Jessica Williams, Timothée Chalamet, and more. The project as a whole, which also includes a new album, was previously touted by Cudi as “the greatest piece of art” he’s ever made.
Below, revisit a recently released teaser.