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Kanye West crying Zane Lowe show
Kanye West on the Zane Lowe show

Kanye West breaks down talking about CSM tutor Louise Wilson

Yeezy cried while talking on BBC Radio 1 about his relationship with the late professor

It's been a rollercoaster 24 hours for Kanye West. Fresh from embarrassing Britain at the Brits by repping the UK grime scene better than any beige awards show ever could, he gave an in-depth interview to Zane Lowe in which he broke down in tears discussing the death of Louise Wilson, the legendary Central Saint Martins professor.

Kanye discussed being talked down to by fashion houses and bemoaned his frustrations at being consistently ignored despite having carved out a reputation as a genuine creative. He talked about class, that moment with Beck (he's since apologised on Twitter for it) and collaborating with Paul McCartney. But the biggest moment came when he broke down in tears talking about his friend Wilson, who died in May last year.

"I went to Louise Wilson's memorial, the greatest fashion instructor of all time, and I'm talking about of all timers," he told Lowe. "So Louise Wilson was the baddest professor of all time of any fashion school ever, notorious for not letting people stop at a seven or eight, pushing people to a 12."

West lists Wilson's proteges – Phoebe Philo, Alexander McQueen, Alber Elbaz, Christopher Kane – as designers who pushed themselves to a 12. But the professor also gave him some life advice. 

"The last time I saw her, we had a dinner at Hakkasan which is my favorite restaurant in London," he tells Lowe. "I think she knew she was going to pass and she just wanted to give me some words of advice going forward. She was asking me about my daughter, my wife, and she said, 'So many students, they don't give it their all, and the problem is, as soon as they do anything halfway good when they're two years old, three years old, their parents clap.' And she just looked at me and she said, 'Kanye, don't clap.'"

He adds: "I didn't know we were going to lose her. She told me, she said, 'Thank you for the times where we came to performances,' and this really meant a lot to me, she would..." West then covered his face and began to cry. After Lowe stops the interview, West collects himself and says: "That's never happened to me in an interview before."

West and Wilson had enjoyed a close relationship before her death. At one point, there was talk that West was going to join the MA fashion course, and even that the two were working together on a collection – rumours which Wilson nipped in the bud.

"He is very knowledgeable about fashion and interested – he is also interesting, he has an individual point of view," Wilson told Vogue in 2011. He has visited the college twice – most recently about employing interns to work on a variety of projects. He has supported the fashion school (with its fundraising regarding its move to Kings Cross) with a donation. I have not however been working closely with him on a collection but I certainly wish him well."

Naturally (this is Kanye, after all), it's a pretty fascinating interview and worth your 45 minutes. If you want to see him discuss Wilson, skip to 25 minutes in.