Kanye Omari West (born June 8, 1977) is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, director, entrepreneur, and fashion designer. He first gained prominence as a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records; he achieved recognition for his work on rapper Jay-Z's The Blueprint (2001), as well as hit singles for musical artists including Alicia Keys, Ludacris, and Janet Jackson. His style of production originally used high-pitched vocal samples from soul songs incorporated with his own drums and instruments. He later broadened his influences to include 1970s R&B, baroque pop, trip hop, arena rock, house, folk, alternative, electronica, synthpop, industrial, and classical music.
West released his debut album The College Dropout in 2004 to commercial and critical acclaim and followed up with number of successful albums. He is one of the world's best-selling artists of all time, having sold more than 21 million albums and 66 million digital downloads. He has won a total of 21 Grammy Awards, making him one of the most awarded artists of all-time.