Rapper Kanye West interrupted Bob Dylan’s Nobel acceptance speech in Oslo Thursday during a revamped awards ceremony aimed at making the 115 year old prize more “culturally relevant.” Amid a chorus of catcalls, West stepped in front of the perplexed laureate saying, “I’ma let you finish, Bob, but Beyonce is one of the greatest writers of all time.”
Earlier in the evening, Norwegian Nobel Committee Chairman Thorbjørn Jagland seemed taken aback when Dylan stepped forward to receive his medal after Ragland had recounted the author’s death following a bout of drinking at the White Horse Tavern in New York’s Greenwich Village in 1953. It’s not immediately clear if the committee thought they were crowning Welsh poet Dylan Thomas posthumously.
The West incident is not the first time Mr. Dylan has been upstaged. During Dylan’s 1998 Grammy performance a deranged interloper, discovered later to be poet John Ashbury, lept on stage and began gyrating grotesquely with the words SOY BOMB inexplicably sharpied across his naked torso.
Asked later what it means to be immortalized alongside T.S. Eliot, William Faulkner and Pablo Neruda Dylan replied, “Aw, those guys can’t rhyme for shit.”