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Kanye West Steps Forward — and Up

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Before his own rise up the music charts, Kanye West spent his time producing hits for other top rappers, including Jay-Z. Convinced of the need to display his own unique skills, he released the hugely successful disc College Dropout in 2004.

West recently released his sophomore effort, Late Registration -- an album that has been hailed as a strong follow-up to College Dropout, which sold 440,000 copies in its first week.

Songs from Late Registration have already been embraced as anthems, with the Jamie Foxx collaboration "Gold Digger" high on the charts.

Copyright NPR 2016.

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