Why Isn’t Kanye West’s Grammy-Nominated ‘All Day’ on the ‘Swish’ Track List?
A brief analysis of the historical stage-stormer's intentional exclusion
Kanye West released the Swish track list earlier today, and while certain inclusions were expected — the soulful new Kendrick collab “No More Parties in L.A.”, the morose and insular “Real Friends,” and last year’s “Wolves” with Sia and Vic Mensa — there was a notable exclusion. Kylie Jenner’s name may be on the sheet of paper, but 2015’s blistering “All Day,” initially billed as the first single from his new album (remember when it was still called So Help Me God?), is not. To be fair, neither is “Only One,”; nor is “FACTS,” but that’s because it’s… um, not very good.
Excluding “All Day” is surprising for a lot of reasons, not least of all Paul McCartney’s whistling, which should have carte blanche to make it onto any album it was supposed to be a part of: The “All Day” rollout alone was pretty red-carpet, featuring a clip of Diddy and West recording the track in the studio and a screening of the Steve McQueen-directed music video at LACMA.
The real questions, though, are 1) What does “FML” stand for? and 2) Why West wouldn’t want to include a Grammy-nominated song on one of the most anticipated albums of the year? Awards shows — and public acceptance and praise of his works — have historically been very important to Kim Kardashian’s (arguably) better half, whether he’s announcing his candidacy for 2020 presidency at the VMAs, or someone else is taking it upon themselves to crash the People’s Choice Awards proceedings in his honor.
It’s definitely the understatement of the year to say that the West doesn’t play by the rules, and it’s possible this foreshadows another unexpected move at the Grammy Awards next month — maybe West will pull a Miley and release Swish to the TV-watching masses when/if “All Day” wins for Best Rap Song. Either way, the rap god has found yet another way to keep our eyes glued to the screen.