Kanye West stirred the pot once again upon the release of Pusha-T’s Daytona on Friday (May 25), which featured Whitney Houston’s drug-ridden bathroom as the cover art. Now, the late singer’s Estate has responded to the creative decision.
They said they were “extremely disappointed in Kanye’s choice” in a statement released to ET‘s Kevin Frazier. “Even in Whitney’s death, we see that no one is exempt from the harsh realities of the world,” the statement continues.
West paid $85,000 for the rights to the photo, taken in 2006 by one of Houston’s family members. She died a couple of years later, on February 11, 2012, from accidental drowning in a bathtub in addition to drug use.
In an interview with Angie Martinez last Wednesday (May 23), Pusha-T explained how the album art was swapped last minute per West’s request. “The [original] artwork, it was pictures that we all agreed on. He picked the photographer, I took these pictures, I was like, ‘Yo, these are fresh.’ I picked all of these pictures out, he had a little edit to it, how he wanted the actual grading of the picture to look. Picked the picture, great, we look, boom, boom, boom, it’s good.”
“One a.m., my phone rings. No caller ID. [West says], ‘Hey, yeah, I think we should change the artwork.’ And, ‘I like this other artwork. And this other artwork is 85 grand,'” he continued. “I said, ‘Hey, I don’t want to pay for that, and I wasn’t even going to ask you to pay for that. We picked what we picked, it’s here, it’s ready.’ ‘No, this is what people need to see to go along with this music. Im’ma pay for that.'”