Kanye West Is Retiring from ‘Professional Music,’ Says Rich The Kid

The rapper shared a text message exchange where his "Carnival" collaborator declared his retirement, but it’s unclear if the decision is official

<p>Bellocqimages/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images</p> Kanye West is seen on March 21, 2024 in Los Angeles

Bellocqimages/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Kanye West is seen on March 21, 2024 in Los Angeles

Is Kanye West waving his white flag to the music industry?

According to Rich The Kid, the rapper/producer, 47, allegedly declared that he’s retiring from music, though it’s unclear what exactly that entails or if the decision is final.

Per a since-deleted screenshot of a text exchange posted by Rich The Kid, 31, on Tuesday, July 9, West (now known professionally as Ye) wrote, “I am retiring from professional music.” His reason? All the musician hinted is that he’s “not sure what else to do” as far as music goes.

Related: Kanye West Accuses Former Personal Assistant of 'Blackmail and Extortion' After She Files Complaint Against Him

However, Rich The Kid replied with outrage, “Retire? Why? How? The ppl NEED you the music you & Ty & we have made was the BIGGEST STAMP in culture to this date in 2024. Drop Ye about mine & V@ and we do it all over again the kids need you big bra fasho maybe some time to chill but retiring ain't it."

PEOPLE reached out to a rep for West for comment.

<p>Arnold Jerocki/Getty</p> Kanye West at the Marni fashion show during Milan Fashion Week on February 23, 2024

Arnold Jerocki/Getty

Kanye West at the Marni fashion show during Milan Fashion Week on February 23, 2024

Shortly after he posted the screenshotted-texts, Rich The Kid announced on X (formerly Twitter) that he’s dropping new music with West featured on his forthcoming album, Life’s a Gamble. “ACTUALLY WE DROPPING FRIDAY 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂 7/19,” he wrote, confirming the project’s release date.

According to the album’s track list, there’s an upcoming collaboration with West titled “Plain Jane,” plus the already-released single “Gimme a Second 2” featuring Ty Dolla $ign and Peso Pluma.

There’s also the track “Carnival” with Playboi Carti and Ty Dolla $ign, 42, that was featured on the latter’s collaborative Vultures 1 album with West, which dropped in February. It peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 the following month.

Related: Kanye West Settles Copyright Lawsuit with Donna Summer Estate over 'Unauthorized Interpolation' on Vultures 1 Song

West’s alleged retirement announcement comes weeks after he and Ty Dolla $ign were slated to release their sequel project, Vultures 2, on Friday, May 3. Thanks to their first album together, the duo (known as ¥$) received a 2024 BET Award for best group.

According to an Instagram post shared by Ty Dolla $ign, the pair are next set to bring their Vultures listening experience to Korea on Friday, Aug. 23. However, it’s unclear if they’ll perform their follow-up project, which still doesn’t have a confirmed release date. In his recent Billboard cover story, though, Ty Dolla $ign said Vultures 2 is almost done and could drop any day now. 

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