Kanye West’s Fade was like 50,000 volts to the chest of the humdrum MTV Video Music Awards. The video is simple and effective and it helped Teyana Taylor seize the crown for best performance of the night.
The video is a testament to choreography and minimalism. Kanye and Jae Blaze, an acclaimed choreographer and artistic director, made a creative decision to showcase Teyana Taylor. Mrs. Taylor, dressed in a few scraps of clothing, dances for three minutes around a gym filled with decades-old equipment illuminated by scant streaks of sunlight. The video looks and feels like the 1980s, but the dancing showcases the video’s modernity as Mrs. Taylor and Mr. Blaze incorporated several different styles into the performance.
Beyonce, the finest woman of the last like 15 years, got her cheeks all out and I’m still thinking about Teyana Taylor. Go figure lol
— Kazeem Famuyide (@RealLifeKaz) August 29, 2016
Before seeing the video, I saw this tweet come across my feed and immediately Googled the name Teyana Taylor. She is one of those famous people that I didn’t know that I knew. She’s married to Iman Shumpert a professional basketball player for the Cleveland Cavaliers. I was watching a Cavs game last year when they mentioned that Mr. Shumpert had delivered his baby girl at his house with his wife Teyana Taylor. That was eight months ago. Read that again: she gave birth to a child eight months ago. Now scroll back to the top and re-watch the video and never make another excuse about not going to the gym.
The end of the video is a bit of a head scratcher. The closing shot is Mrs. Taylor transformed into a cat woman reclining on a bed of sheep with her husband. It felt somewhat disharmonious with the rest of the video. Jae Blaze provided a possible interpretation of what it meant here.
Fade is the third single off of Kanye West’s album/saga The Life of Pablo and it is certainly the one that has created the most buzz. It was a master stroke to release the video at the MTV VMAs though I would have suggested the Super Bowl. The video leaves everybody waiting to see what Kanye, Teyana Taylor, and the rest of GOOD Music will do next.