Kanye’s Cabinet

That dizzying array of art, beats, and fashion doesn’t happen by itself. “Kanye has researchers in-house,” says Marco Brambilla, who directed West’s “Power” video. Meet West’s inner circle.

Don C Manager, Best Friend The two grew up together in Chicago, and Don has been Kanye’s right-hand man since day one, first as a D.J.”road manager, now as general-access conduit to the throne. Photo: Johnny Nunez/WireImage/Getty images

Pusha T Guest Verse Assassin Kanye guested on Pusha T’s Clipse track, “Kinda Like a Big Deal.” Pusha T laces West’s beats with his trademark overenunciated shit-talking (he’s got the primo spot on “Runaway”). Photo: Patrick McMullan

Ibn Jasper, a.k.a. Ferrari Murakami Barber, Image Consultant, Shopping Companion The Chicago stylist has been known to charge $1,500 a cut; Kanye presumably gets a wholesale discount. Assisted with Pastelle. Photo: Greg Washington

Gabe Tesoriero Publicist The longtime Def Jam employee has repped West since his first album, The College Dropout; handles and spins client’s endless publicity brouhahas. Photo: Patrick McMullan

Taz Arnold Creative Consultant Kanye signed Taz’s group SA-RA, then became infatuated with his style. Now Taz has his label, Ti$a, and operates as a conduit between West and the fashion world; conceived the crew’s infamous trip to Paris’s 2009 Fashion Week. Photo: Patrick McMullan

Mike Dean Secret Studio Genius The two met while mixing Scarface’s The Fix. Dean, a multi-instrumentalist (he even plays bassoon) famous for southern-rap production, executes West’s vision in the studio; the original instrumentation on the tracks is often Dean’s. Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images

Cassius Clay Junior Stylist West met the then-19-year-old Clay (that’s a family name) at Barneys. Impressed by Clay’s crest-embossed shoes, West persuaded him to leave Yale, and now Clay is assisting with Kanye’s new shoe for Stubbs and Wootton, makers of those lucky slip-ons. Photo: Patrick McMullan

Jay-Z Mentor, Friend, Collaborator, Boss, Role Model, Rival West made his name on Jay’s The Blueprint, recording beats for tracks including “Heart of the City.” Later, Jay Z signed West to Roc a fella. The two will release a joint album, Watch the Throne, in 2011. Photo: Patrick McMullan

Kanye’s Cabinet