10 Things We Learned from Jay Z’s Interview With Big Boy
What were we just saying about Jay Z interviews? After sitting down with Hot 97, Power 105.1, BBC Radio 1 and Life+Times, Hov extended his rare and busy press run this morning by phoning into Big Boy's Neighborhood on Power 106. And, needless to say, gems were dropped.
Before heading off to shoot the 'Holy Grail' video in L.A., the Marcy mogul discussed everything from his 'Legends of the Summer' tour with Justin Timberlake and dropping the hyphen in his name, to keeping Biggie's legacy alive and his upcoming collaborations with Nas, JT and Kanye West, in particular 'Watch the Throne 2.'
If you don't fancy sticking around for the full 20 minutes, here are 10 things we learned from Jay Z's Power 106 interview.
In his interview with Hot 97, Jay Z said that the recording process for 'Watch the Throne 2' "hasn't begun," but he did express his optimism about the project. Elaborating on the album with Big Boy, Hov revealed that his and Kanye's plan was always to drop solo albums — 'Magna Carta... Holy Grail' and 'Yeezus,' respectively — before getting to work on their second full-length collaboration. Hopefully, that's sooner than later.
For the first time, Jay Z publicly addressed Kanye West's unforgettable diss towards Kim's ex-hubby and Brooklyn Nets forward Kris Humphries on 'Cold' ("Lucky I ain't had Jay drop him from the team"). We can imagine a man of Shawn Carter's stature wouldn't take too kindly to another guy barking orders at him — even if it was little brother — but, thankfully, no offence was taken, nor on his former employees' half.
Not only did he reveal that Kanye first freestyled the track for him while on tour, Hov came to the defence of provocative lyrics on the whole, saying, "it’s rap music; sometimes it rubs you the wrong way." Maybe J. Cole should have consulted his boss before apologizing for 'Jodeci Freestyle.'
For the brief period that Jay Z and Biggie could both call themselves rap stars, their friendship was prevalent. In this interview, Hov remembered speaking with his late friend what would have been hours before his death. Big was celebrating the nearing release of 'Life After Death' at a party in L.A. and got on the phone with Jay, who was back in New York, to joke, "Yo, playboy! Why you not out here, playboy?!"
Jay Z also spoke on keeping Biggie's legacy alive: "I take him everywhere I go. Every step, every accomplishment; he'll be there in some sort of way, whether it'll be live in concert or on record."
If you're still crying that "hip-hop is dead," you're stuck at least a half a decade in the past. Just ask Jay Z. Hov shared his thoughts on the current state of the genre and compared 2013's crop of albums to those of '92, '94 and '96, specifically. He also named Kanye West, Drake, J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar as the few MCs that keep him on his toes.
Jay Z and Justin Timberlake are proving that the rap-R&B combination is still as deadly as ever. Not only joining forces for the 'Legends of the Summer' stadium tour, the pair can also brag about having two of the biggest records of the year in 'Suit & Tie' and 'Holy Grail.' It looks like the two Js' streak isn't about to cool down as Hov announced that he's featured on JT's upcoming album, 'The 20/20 Experience: 2 of 2,' which arrives September 30.
Oh yeah, here's another reason why Jay Z and Justin Timberlake are going to continue to kill it in 2013. After Timbaland announced the record in a recent interview with Revolt TV, Hov added that 'Sinatra in the Sand,' a cut that he and JT guest on for Nas' new album, probably won't be hitting iTunes anytime soon, but the trio did start recording it. "We need to get back in there and finish it," Jay said.
"I always think of that Biggie song; 'Remember Rappin Duke? duh-ha, duh-ha/ You never thought that hip-hop would take it this far.'"
Even for one of the biggest names in the game — not to mention of all time — Jay Z never foresaw hip-hop's impact. Reflecting upon the grand scale of his 'Legends of the Summer' tour with Justin Timberlake, Hov remembered being told to perform with R&B acts — not rappers — just to play arenas on his 'Hard Knock Life' tour back in 1998.
Looking ahead, the Roc Nation rapper explains that his career achievements — #newrules included — are all in the name of progress. From selling out Yankee Stadium to breaking down racial barriers, it's all about "pushing the culture forward."
Remember when everyone was sort of confused about why iTunes credited 'Watch the Throne' to Kanye West and JAY Z back in 2011? That wasn't a spelling mistake. According to the man himself, Hov dropped the dash about three years ago to "change with the times." But why did sites only pick up on the story last month? "I guess it was a slow news day."
We can't even fathom what kind of fucked up situation would lead to Jay Z being stranded at sea on a raft with the decision to save only one of R&B's blue-eyed boys, but if he was, Justin Timberlake would be getting a helping hand (sorry, Robin). Also: in an alternate Presidential scenario, Obama's getting saved; Clinton's drowning.
"...But a spoon ain't one."