Music

'Jesus Walks,' Kanye Talks

Kanye West on his new single's three videos - One song (''Jesus Walks'') plus three videos equals a history-making event according to the hip hop star

Poor Kanye West. The ubiquitous rap star had to settle for only three video versions of his single ''Jesus Walks,'' an ode to the man on the cross. ''The song evokes so many thoughts it couldn't have been limited to just four minutes of visuals,'' insists West. The arresting interpretations of the fervent hip-hop-gospel track, the third hit from his double-platinum debut, ''The College Dropout,'' are sure to get the TRL kids' attention: Kanye preaches! A Klansman burns! And in the third version (available only on MTV.com), Jesus literally -- get this -- walks! West tells EW about his holy trinity. -- Raymond Fiore

DIRECTED BY Michael Haussman (Madonna's ''Take a Bow'') ''When I saw the L.A. background, it left a weird taste in my mouth, like it was an ice Cube video from back in the day. I like the video, but I just wasn't quite satisfied. The day [after we finished], I saw Jay-Z's '99 Problems' video. That put the battery in my back.''

DIRECTED BY Chris Milk (West's ''All Falls Down'') ''The KKK is the closest thing to the devil for black people in the South. The point [of this clip] is that no matter what you do, God is still there for you. I think it's a classic. [The burning Klansman is] one of the most memorable video images. The production value is great on this one.''

DIRECTED BY Coodie & Chike (Pitbull's ''Culo'') and Kanye West ''Chris' version was really good, but I thought we were missing the dance moves. So I went and did another that I felt, like, captured the hood. My thing is, there's no telling if I'm going to be around next year, but while I'm here, I'm gonna make history.''

Originally posted Jul 23, 2004 Published in issue #775 Jul 23, 2004 Order article reprints