Joey Badass Says He Inspired Kanye West’s “Real Friends”

Joey Bada$$ cracked open a bottle of wine on Saturday night and hopped on Instagram Live, where he shared a steady stream of stories with followers. While watching music videos on a projector, the Brooklyn rapper shared a lot of updates to fans and answered some fan questions, including a particularly juicy anecdote about Kanye West.

“Kanye? I gotta email him again,” Joey said when asked by a fan about a potential collaboration between the two. At that point, he launched into a story about his first encounter with Ye where he learned he’d inspired him.

“I’ll tell y’all something very real about Kanye,” he began. “A drunk man tells no lies… I met Kanye for the first time at Coachella 2016.” According to Joey, Kanye asked him if he knew The Life Of Pablo song “Real Friends.” “I’m looking at this n***a like, ‘Yeah, I heard ‘Real Friends.’ Who the fuck ain’t heard ‘Real Friends?’ He was like, ‘You inspired me to make that song.’ … I couldn’t believe it. The only thing I was thinking in my head was, ‘N***a, why the fuck you ain’t put me on that shit then? I could use the clout, n***a, shit [laughs] … Shout out to Kanye though… I still don’t believe it to this day.”

Joey didn’t elaborate on exactly how he was an inspiration for “Real Friends,” but it’s not the first time he’s made such claims. In July 2017, he said he was an inspiration for JAY-Z’s album 4:44. More recently, Joey revealed that he was a ghostwriter on Post Malone’s hit “rockstar.” In that case, T-Pain backed up Joey’s side of the story.

“Real Friends” is from Kanye’s most recent album The Life of Pablo and features Ty Dolla $ign with Boi-1da assisting on Kanye West’s production. On the song, Kanye reflects on his relationships with friends and family.