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Kanye West legally changes name to Ye

“The being formerly known as Kanye West” has officially changed his name to Ye, with approval from an LA judge

By Grace Almond

Kanye West performs live
Kanye West (Picture: YouTube)

Kanye West has legally changed his name to Ye, following approval by a judge in Los Angeles.

The rapper’s unusual name change was given the green light by Superior Court Judge Michelle Williams, months after his initial application was filed back in August this year.

Ye is the latest in a long line of artists known by a mononym, including Adele, Madonna and Prince.

The court request, citing “personal reasons”, comes just over three years after the release of his eighth studio album ‘Ye’, named after the nickname he has adopted for a number of years.

Shortly after the release of ‘Ye’, he tweeted: “The being formally known as Kanye West. I am YE”. Ye has also been the artist’s Twitter handle for some time.

Now, with no objections to the request, the change was granted on Monday (Oct. 18). Whilst Ye’s attorney, who filed the petition, did not immediately respond to requests for additional comments on the ruling, a copy of the ruling will be available in court in a week.

Formerly known as Kanye Omari West, Ye takes his name for symbolic, religious reasons too, as well as the moniker being a shortened version of his former first name.

In 2018, the 44-year-old told radio host Big Boy “I believe ‘ye’ is the most commonly used word in the Bible. In the Bible it means you.” He added “So, I’m you. And I’m us. It’s us. It went from being Kanye, which means the only one, to just Ye, just being a reflection of our good, our bad, our confused – everything. It’s more of a reflection of who we are [as] beings.”

It’s been a year of changes for Ye, who released his eagerly anticipated 10th studio album, ‘Donda’ at the end of August in memory of his late mother, featuring 27 tracks at a running time of just under two hours. Ye caused controversy by inviting disgraced artists Marilyn Manson and DaBaby to appear at the album’s Chicago listening party. 

Ye is also currently in the middle of his divorce from his wife, Kim Kardashian West, whom he married in 2014. The couple have four children together.