'I am Ye': US rapper Kanye West reveals name change on Twitter

Kanye West has reportedly used the nickname "Ye" for several years. PHOTO: REUTERS

American rapper Kanye West appears to have a new name, and his announcement on Twitter that he will be now known as "Ye" has quickly caught on with social media users.

"The being formally known as Kanye West. I am YE," he tweeted on Saturday (Sept 29), ahead of his appearance on US television comedy show Saturday Night Live.

West, 41, has yet to elaborate on his apparent name change, though he has reportedly used the nickname "Ye" for several years.

In May, he had released an album with the same name.

West, who is married to reality TV star Kim Kardashian West, was slated to release his latest studio album, Yandhi, on Saturday.

On the live show, West performed the single I Love It with rapper Lil Pump, as well as a new song with singer Teyana Taylor titled We Got Love.

Fans and social media users have shown mixed reactions to West's cryptic Twitter reveal.

"Whatever, Kanye," said one Twitter user.

"Prince did it better," another added, referring to the late US pop music superstar.

Some were puzzled about how to pronounce the name, while others were more tickled by the fact that Kanye had apparently misspelt the word "formerly".

Overnight, the Twitter post received over 7,000 replies, 169,000 likes and 32,000 retweets.

West would not be the first musician who has changed his name.

American rapper Snoop Dogg was once Snoop Lion, and rapper Diddy was known in various stages as P. Diddy, Puffy and B. Love.

Many celebrities have also gone by just one name, including Sting, Madonna and Adele.

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