Four years on, the full and unedited version of the infamous phone call between Kanye West and Taylor Swift concerning Yeezy’s Life of Pablo cut ‘Famous’ has surfaced online.
Back in 2016, the feud between the pair reached a new level after West dropped the Pablo song, which included the line “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous,” referring to Swift.
Upon its release, Swift and her team condemned the track and denied her approval of it, saying she was unaware of the lyrics contained. West’s wife Kim Kardashian refuted that Swift had given clearance on the lyric during a phone call between West and Swift, posting an edited video of the conversation which made it appear that Swift had indeed approved of the line, and while Swift agreed the call had taken place, maintained that she was never made aware he was planning on referring to her as “that bitch.”
“Where is the video of Kanye telling me he was going to call me ‘that bitch’ in his song? It doesn’t exist because it never happened,” she wrote at the time.
As you may recall, it all set off a predictably awful, misogynistic response from the internet – Swift was branded a “snake” and faced some pretty relentless online abuse, the impacts of which are captured to some extent in recent Swift Netflix doco Miss Americana. She retreated from public life, returning a year later with the album Reputation.
Now, the new footage of the call has leaked, and it definitely indicates that Swift was in the right. West tells Swift about the song, informing her of the “I feel like Taylor might owe me sex,” lyric, and that he’s considering using the line “I made her famous,” but he never says he’s going to call her “that bitch,” which is what much of Swift’s public criticism of the track was about. Swift even expresses relief upon hearing the line, saying, “I thought it was going to be like, ‘That stupid, dumb bitch,’ but it’s not.”
Later in the call, West says he’s going to send through the song with the exact wording after he lays down the verse, and that they could reconvene afterwards. Swift and team have always maintained that West never followed through with sending the full song.
Watch the full, 25-minute call below. You can read a full transcript over at Variety.