Damon Albarn has a problem with Kanye West’s 2015 single “FourFiveSeconds” featuring Rihanna and Paul McCartney. The Blur frontman and founding Gorillaz member said in an interview with French news magazine L’Obs on Thursday that he warned Paul McCartney about working with the rapper.
“Before he decided to work with Kanye West, I sent a text message to McCartney saying, ‘Beware’, but he ignored it, he does what he wants, it’s Paul McCartney,” Albarn said.
He went on to compare West to a vampire, contending that the rapper feeds off of other artists, keeping only his own image in mind when creating music. Albarn also claimed that West didn’t use McCartney’s vocals in the song but included McCartney in the music video.
“I have a problem with this abusive collaboration: we’re talking about Paul McCartney,” Albarn said. “We do not hear him in the song, Kanye West thinks only of Kanye West, uses a name to make headlines, to say ‘McCartney is in my song.'”
While Albarn described West as trapping McCartney, Sir Paul described to DIY that the time he spent working with West mostly boiled down to jam sessions, and days would pass where the two would simply talk to each other while McCartney played on his guitar. One of the riffs McCartney composed ended up being the hook to “FourFiveSeconds.”
Said McCartney: “I was tootling around on guitar, and Kanye spent a lot of time just looking at pictures of Kim on his computer. I’m thinking, are we ever gonna get around to writing?!” McCartney told DIY. “But it turns out he was writing. That’s his muse. He was listening to this riff I was doing and obviously he knew in his mind that he could use that, so he took it, sped it up and then somehow he got Rihanna to sing on it. She’s a big favourite of mine anyway, so that just came without me lifting a finger.”
The music video for “FourFiveSeconds” currently has more than 392 million views on YouTube. Watch it below.