Kanye Omari West (born June 8, 1977) is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, and fashion designer. Over the course of his career, West has been an instigator of various developments within mainstream hip hop and popular music at large. His musical career has drawn on varied influences including soul, R&B, electro, indie rock, synth-pop, and industrial music, in addition to influences from other art mediums including visual art and architecture.
Born in Atlanta and raised in Chicago, West first became known as a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records in the early 2000s, producing singles for recording artists such as Jay-Z, Ludacris and Alicia Keys. Intent on pursuing a solo career as a rapper, West released his debut album The College Dropout in 2004 to widespread critical and commercial success, and founded the record label GOOD Music.