Universal Music Group Denounces Antisemitism in Wake of Kanye West Comments

Universal Music denounces antisemitism following Kanye West comments

Photo Credit: Peter Hutchins

Universal Music Group has issued a statement denouncing antisemitism. The statement comes just days following antisemitic remarks from the rapper on the Drink Champs podcast.

“There is no place for antisemitism in our society. We are deeply committed to combating antisemitism and every other form of prejudice,” Universal Music Group tweeted. The tweet also contains a link to the company’s partnership with the American Jewish Committee. “We’re proud to continue our partnership with @AJCGlobal to educate about anti-Jewish hate & how to combat it.”

The tweet doesn’t specifically reference Kanye West, but it follows comments the rapper made on social media. The Los Angeles Times reports that Kanye is no longer signed to Def Jam after fulfilling the terms of his contract. “Despite his string of ten consecutive #1 albums, it’s uncertain whether a major recording company, some of which are publicly traded, would take on the baggage that West brings,” the paper adds. 

Kanye’s Donda 2 was released without any major label backing and is only available on his own $200 Stem streaming device. Other companies are sitting up and taking notice of the comments, too. Less than a week after opening the Balenciaga summer 2023 show at Paris Fashion Week, the company has cut ties with the rapper.

“Balenciaga has no longer any relationship nor any plans for future projects related to this artist,” reads a statement from the fashion brand’s parent company. On October 17, Balenciaga issued a statement informing customers that Ye’s look on the runway at Paris Fashion Week was removed from its website along with its Yeezy Gap Engineered by Balenciaga collaboration.

Earlier this year, the rapper cut ties with Gap Inc. ending a 10-year partnership between the two. Less than a month after that partnership imploded, Ye put Adidas in his crosshairs. The company announced the multi-billion dollar partnership with the rapper is now under review.