NEW YORK - Kanye West, with a crown of thorns atop his head, poses as Jesus Christ on the cover of the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone. The outspoken rapper defends his brash attitude inside the magazine's pages, on newsstands Friday. He is also pictured posing as Muhammad Ali.
"In America, they want you to accomplish these great feats, to pull off these David Copperfield-type stunts," he says. "You want me to be great, but you don't ever want me to say I'm great?"
West also says his hit song "Gold Digger" was the best song last year and that it should have been nominated for the Grammy's best rap song category: "That's a gimme Grammy."
Nevertheless, the 27-year-old is nominated for eight awards, including album of the year for his sophomore album, "Late Registration." The Grammys will be presented Feb. 8.
West has always been forthright in saying what he feels, most famously when he said "George Bush doesn't care about black people" during a telethon for Hurricane Katrina victims.
"If I was more complacent and I let things slide, my life would be easier, but you all wouldn't be as entertained," he says. "My misery is your pleasure."
The strangest tangent of the Rolling Stone story, however, is when West says he's addicted to pornography. He remembers first seeing his father's Playboy magazine when he was 5 years old.
"Right then," West says, laughing, "it was like, `Houston, we have a problem.'"