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Fake Donda 2 rises up US iTunes charts

By | Published on Tuesday 1 March 2022

Kanye West - Donda 2 launch event

As Kanye West’s ‘Donda 2’ album continues to be exclusive to his own Stem Player device, the rapper’s other albums are doing well on other services because of the hype around the new record. A quick look at the US iTunes hip hop chart shows he has four albums in the top 20. Although, just below ‘Late Registration’ at number eighteen, you’ll spot ‘Donda 2’ by… Wayne Kest.

While the official release of ‘Donda 2’ rides high on the piracy charts – fans largely unwilling to shell out $200 to buy a Stem Player to legally hear it – it seems that someone else has taken advantage of less observant people looking to listen to the new record.

Those who have been following the rollout of West’s new album closely will know that ‘Donda 2’ (currently) has sixteen tracks, runs for over an hour, and features guests including Migos, Alicia Keys, Travis Scott and Future. Also, it’s definitely not available on any legit streaming and download services.

Still, while it may have fewer tracks, a sub-30 minute runtime, and guest names you’ve never heard of, the Wayne Kest album that has crept onto iTunes and the streaming services does share many of the same track titles as West’s version. Anyone listening to it will discover that it’s completely instrumental, though, which should be the final big warning sign that this is not the album you’re looking for.

The Wayne Kest album seems to be a collection of quickly thrown together tracks, possibly pulled from some sort of production music library, which are not of the highest quality. Still, it appears that people are buying it, which means that someone is making money off of it.

There is a producer going by the name of Wayne Kest who has released a number of singles in the last couple of years, although it doesn’t appear to be them who has put out the fake ‘Donda 2’ album. More likely this is someone who spotted an opportunity to fill a hole left by Kanye West, as he refuses to allow licensed services to sell and stream his new album.

All things considered, while West may be pleased with the money he’s made selling Stem Players, it does seem that the rollout of ‘Donda 2’ has been a real boost for music piracy and other sneaky opportunism.