Kanye West’s first “Donda” listening party in Atlanta last month was a simple event — as much as an album-listening party in a football stadium can be simple — featuring the rapper, clad in a mask, stomping around the stadium floor as his album played. The second listening party, also at Mercedes Benz Stadium earlier this month, was more elaborate, where he was surrounded by a flash mob as a dramatically different version of the album played, and ended with him being lofted to the stadium’s ceiling by sheer cables, as if he were ascending to heaven.
While it’s unclear what is in store for the third listening party on Thursday — this time at Soldier Field stadium in West’s hometown of Chicago — it apparently includes his childhood home.
According to a report in the New York Post, West is rebuilding his Chicago childhood home in the middle of Soldier Field. The article includes photos of the house, or a facsimile, being constructed in the stadium. West wiped his Instagram account over the weekend and began reposting cryptic new photos, the first of which was of the 1,600 square foot home he shared with his beloved late mother Donda, who passed away suddenly in 2007 and for whom the new album is named.
According to the Post, the house changed hands several times since Donda sold it in 2003 for $121,000. In 2011, West and Jay-Z visited the home (accompanied by a camera crew) and it was also included in a 2018 episode of “Keeping Up With Kardashians.” He bought the home last year for $225,000.
If nothing else, West has succeeded in making the non-release of “Donda,” which was first announced last summer, a major event. Although the album has been aired publicly twice — and heard by millions via Apple Music livestreams — both times he has pulled it back, apparently for further work but also, possibly, to stage a release-date battle with his longtime rival Drake, who has posted that the release of his “Certified Lover Boy” album is imminent.
Using difficult-to-follow calculations, Vice estimates that West has made several million dollars in profit from the listening events.
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