Watch Kanye's "American Idol" audition: This is "Idol" at its most fun and self-aware

The singing competition launches its 15th and final season with a hopeful unknown from Chicago's South Side

Published January 5, 2016 5:19PM (EST)

Desperate to find a contestant capable of commercial success, "American Idol" might have struck unusual gold. With its 15th and final season set to air tomorrow, "Idol" pre-released a San Francisco audition by up-and-coming hip-hop producer, Kanye, from Chicago's South Side.

The show rarely recognizes rappers--perhaps why it's failed to crown a Grammy-winner in a decade--but made special exception for Kanye, who, "always wanted to rap and no one really believed in me."

Meanwhile, Kanye's pregnant wife, Kim, stood outside the audition room with host Ryan Seacrest. Asked if she's nervous, Kim told Seacrest, "I'm not nervous 'cause I do really believe in him."

Kanye blew the judges away with an original piece (that just so happened to mention Jennifer Lopez, entering her fifth season as an "Idol" judge). Judges Lopez, Keith Urban, and Harry Connick Jr. took no time to deliberate before handing Kanye a golden ticket.

Fifteen years later, it's still heart-warming to see the smile on a young artist's face when they get their first break.

Watch the full audition below:

By Brendan Gauthier

Brendan Gauthier is a freelance writer.

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American Idol Jennifer Lopez Kanye West Kim Kardashian Ryan Seacrest