Kid Cudi delivers emotional TEDx Talk

Kid Cudi is one of the most complex characters in music today. The Cleveland native has made no secret of his struggles with mental illness, and his dependence and addiction upon a plethora of different substances. Scouring through his social media accounts reveals a topsy-turvy, often passive aggressive insight into what is clearly a troubled world for the singer/rapper/songwriter.

Returning to his old high school stomping ground in Cleveland, Ohio, Kid Cudi has delivered an emotional and introspective TEDx Talk to hundreds of school students, detailing his own identity struggles and the problems that plagued him as a youth. The video itself features a heartwarming reunion on stage, as Cudi returns to an auditorium that he hasn’t visited in well over a decade.

The talk itself, entitled “Hi, I’m Scott” is a barebones and stripped back portrayal of the meaning behind Cudi’s music, and the fact that despite his own issues, his passion for music has remained a constant.

At one point I didn’t feel like I was smart enough to pass that test. I didn’t feel like I was smart enough to go to this college. But with music, it was like, no one’s going to take that from me.”

Cudi also urged the audience to seek help for their own issues, and to ensure that they do not become a hindrance to the pursuit of passion.

There were things that I was dealing with as a youth, at this school, this I didn’t talk to people about, that probably kept me from putting my best foot forward with my academics. The music was a platform for me to express myself and also realise that I’m not that crazy, that there’s other kids out there that might be depressed, lonely, or dealing with suicide.”

Cudi’s latest album Speeding Bullet To Heaven has been universally panned by critics and fans alike; the brooding, melancholic attempt at grunge has failed to satisfy those hoping for a return to the rapper who brought us Man on the Moon. Although it remains to be seen what musical direction Kid Cudi will take next, we can take solace in the fact that he remains an inspiration to his local community and is eager to discussion issues that are oft overlooked in hip-hop and society as a whole.

Embedding of the TEDx Talk has been disabled, so check it out here.