Kanye West formally petitioned the Los Angeles Superior Court to legally change his name on Tuesday, the Associated Press reported.
The 44-year-old “Jesus Walks” rapper cited “personal reasons” in court documents for his decision to replace his full name Kanye Omari West with the mononym “Ye.”
Although the name change needs to be approved by a judge, there is little reason to suspect it will not go through. West’s documents note that name changes in California are approved “unless there’s evidence a name change is designed to commit fraud or other shenanigans.”
West has been referring to himself as Ye for years, including on his social media accounts. In September 2018, he tweeted, “the being formally known as Kanye West. I am YE.”
Earlier that year, he released an album called Ye.
“Why the album title ‘Ye‘? radio host Big Boy asked him in an interview.
“I believe ‘Ye’ is the most commonly used word in the Bible, and in the Bible it means ‘you,'” West said. “So, I’m you, I’m us. It’s us. It went from being ‘Kanye,’ which means I’m the only one, to just ‘Ye,’ just being a reflection of our good, our bad, our confused, everything. I’m just more a reflection of who we are as beings.”
In a 2020 interview with GQ, West referred to himself as a “born again” Christian. His most recently released album, 2019’s Jesus Is King, marked his first foray into gospel music. It won a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Christian Album.
Fans are eagerly awaiting West’s 10th studio album Donda, which is named after his late mother Donda West. The album, which was expected to drop in July, has been delayed several times. The release is now set for Friday, Aug. 27, according to an Apple Music listing.
After holding two listening parties for the album in Atlanta, West is hosting a third listening party on Thursday at Chicago’s Soldier Field, which can accommodate 38,000 fans. The set will feature a recreation of West’s childhood home.
With religious themes clearly on his mind, West ended his second listening party at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Aug. 5 by ascending high into the air of the arena using suspension wires while rapturous music played.
West’s petition for a name change comes after his wife Kim Kardashian West filed for divorce in February, after nearly seven years of marriage. She did not ask the court to legally change her name in the proceedings. The exes, who were spotted having lunch together in Malibu last week, share four children with the last name West: daughters North, 8, and Chicago, 3, and Biblically named sons Saint, 5, and Psalm, 2.