Just as we were still marveling over Jay-Z‘s noteworthy Emmy win, the hip-hop titan surprised us again. This time, with a brand-new track, “I Want You Forever”, that is sure to resonate with music enthusiasts across the globe.
The Reveal: “I Want You Forever”
This track isn’t just another addition to his extensive discography. It’s a part of the much-anticipated soundtrack of the film The Book of Clarence. The soundtrack, a rich tapestry of varying musical styles, features contributions from a diverse range of artists.
The Unprecedented Collaboration
From the vibrant Doja Cat and the legendary Lil Wayne to the enigmatic Kodak Black, soulful Jorja Smith, innovative Kid Cudi, and reggae king Shabba Ranks, the soundtrack is an impressive assembly of raw talent.
The Book of Clarence: An Overview
The soundtrack’s release on January 12 coincides with the film’s U.S. theatrical debut, painting a perfect picture of synchronicity between the music and the movie.
Jeymes Samuel: The Visionary
Jeymes Samuel, the man behind The Harder They Fall, has directed and written The Book of Clarence. In a candid conversation with Elliot Wilson and Jay-Z, Samuel shared insights about the movie and the soundtrack.
The Soundtrack: A Deep Dive
He described the soundtrack as “so deep” and revealed that Jay-Z’s cut was almost a whopping 10 minutes long. The soundtrack is a unique blend of sounds and emotions, which Samuel aptly referred to as “absolute soulful, Biblical bliss.”
Jay-Z and D’Angelo’s Track: A Masterpiece
A highlight of the soundtrack is the nearly 10-minute-long track featuring Jay-Z and R&B icon D’Angelo. This piece is expected to be a soulful journey, and fans can hardly wait for this epic collaboration.
The Star-Studded Ensemble
The Book of Clarence stars LaKeith Stanfield in the title role. This dramedy tells the story of a man who, in a desperate attempt to settle his debts, pretends to be the Messiah. The film also stars Omar Sy, Teyana Taylor, Anna Diop, and Benedict Cumberbatch.
The Book of Clarence: The Film
The Book of Clarence has been a long-cherished project for Samuel. Even while working on The Harder They Fall and other projects, the narrative and the music for this film were always brewing in his mind.
Jeymes Samuel: The Multi-talented Maverick
Samuel’s passion for the project extended beyond directing and writing. He composed the score and wrote and performed on the soundtrack, making The Book of Clarence his all-in-one creative journey.
The Book of Clarence: The Soundtrack
The soundtrack also includes the previously released track “Hallelujah Heaven.” Collaborating with Lil Wayne, Buju Banton, and Shabba Ranks on this track was a thrilling experience for Samuel, who loved the synergy of these artists on the same track.
Epilogue: The Release and Reception
The 11-song soundtrack is now available for streaming on all major platforms. Fans of Jay-Z and the other artists involved are eagerly awaiting the film’s release and the chance to delve into the soundtrack’s depth.
With the soundtrack of The Book of Clarence, we see yet another side of Jay-Z’s massive talent. It’s a testament to his versatility and his ability to continually surprise us with his ever-evolving artistry. From his Emmy win to this exciting new release, Jay-Z continues to prove why he’s the king of hip-hop.
Image credit: Brian Friedman / Shutterstock.com
New York’s renowned rapper, Jay-Z, may soon be honored with his own citywide holiday. With his roots firmly planted in Brooklyn, the music mogul’s birthday could turn into a significant annual event in the Big Apple.
A Birthday Worth Celebrating
Jay-Z, originally known as Shawn Carter, has created a global legacy not just as an artist, but also as a businessman, family man, wealth creator, and community advocate. His birthday on December 4th might soon be commemorated as “Jay-Z Day,” a testament to his significant contributions and the love he receives from his community.
Councilwoman Farah Louis stated, “The global phenomenon that is Jay-Z—born Shawn Carter—is widely known as an artist, mogul, husband and father, wealth builder, and supporter of economic development and community causes.”
This move aligns perfectly with the sentiment of the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop, recognizing a homegrown hero and showcasing the city’s support.
From Legislation to Celebration
The legislation for Jay-Z Day was proposed earlier this month by the New York City Council members. The proposal has been forwarded to the Committee on Cultural Affairs, Libraries, and International Intergroup Relations.
Once the bill is filed with the City Council, it will be deliberated during the council’s 2024 session, starting on January 3rd. If passed, this will mark a significant milestone for not only Jay-Z but also for the music industry and New York City itself.
An Iconic Figure
Jay-Z, beyond his music, is known for his entrepreneurial ventures, philanthropic efforts, and influence within the community. His journey from the streets of Brooklyn to becoming a global icon is an inspiration for many, making the idea of a Jay-Z Day a fitting tribute to his life and achievements.
Celebrating with Family
Even before the official recognition, Jay-Z seems to be in the celebratory spirit. The rapper was recently seen enjoying a city tour with his wife, Beyoncé, their daughter, Blue Ivy, and a close-knit group of friends and family.
In the spirit of Hip Hop’s golden jubilee, the idea of commemorating Jay-Z’s birthday as a citywide holiday resonates with the city’s vibrant culture and its appreciation for homegrown talent. As the world awaits the council’s decision, the anticipation for “Jay-Z Day” continues to brew.
Image credit: Brian Friedman / Shutterstock.com
Memphis Bleek, a renowned figure in the music industry, recently shared his intriguing tale of his relationship with Jay-Z. Their musical collaboration, which had been dormant for over two decades, has sparked curiosity among their fans and followers.
The Unavoidable Question
During a press tour in New York City, the famous news outlet, TMZ, approached Bleek with a series of questions. Among them, one query stood out: Why hadn’t he and Jay-Z teamed up for a track since 2002’s “As One” from The Blueprint 2 album?
Bleek’s response was surprisingly candid. He insinuated that it was Jay-Z, the founder of Roc Nation, who was reluctant to collaborate with him.
“He knows I’m better than him. That’s why he doesn’t want to collaborate with me on a song. He fears I might outshine him. He’d rather keep me away from his records because he believes I’m too good. That’s why he suggested I venture into the liquor business.”
Memphis Bleek and Jay-Z: A Historic Duo
During the early phases of his career, Memphis Bleek was considered Jay-Z’s protégé and occasional hype man. They collaborated on various tracks, such as “Coming of Age,” “Change the Game,” “Is That Your Chick,” “Get Your Mind Right Mami,” “My Mind Right,” “Can I Live II,” and many more.
A Shift in Focus: From Music to Liquor
Bleek eventually transitioned from the music scene to take over Jay-Z’s D’usse Cognac brand. His efforts significantly contributed to the brand’s popularity in the market. When asked about his shift in focus during an interview with VIBE in 2017, Bleek shared:
“I was in JAY Z’s office, and I told him I wanted to transition from music. I never had any job in my life, not even a summer youth program. I had always been into music. However, I wanted to try my hand at working. I’m a part of everything at D’Usse. I started this thing, the first hashtag went out on my page.”
Memphis Bleek’s story serves as a fascinating insight into the world of music and business. His journey from being a protégé of Jay-Z to leading a popular liquor brand is nothing short of inspiring. The world eagerly waits for what the future holds for this multi-talented personality.
In the end, whether or not we’ll see another collaboration between Memphis Bleek and Jay-Z remains an intriguing mystery for their fans. Until then, we can only relish their past hits and anticipate a future where these two music giants might share the stage once again.
Image by David Mark from Pixabay
Jay-Z, the iconic music artist, has been an influential figure in the music industry for decades. From his early days as a rapper to his success as an entrepreneur and philanthropist, Jay-Z’s story is a testament to the power of determination and creativity. Now, his legacy is being celebrated in a grand exhibit called the Book of HOV, which has recently opened at the Brooklyn Public Library in collaboration with Roc Nation.
A Labor of Love and Collaboration
The Book of HOV is a 40,000-square-foot exhibit that takes full advantage of the Brooklyn Public Library’s Grand Army Plaza branch. The exhibit, crafted in collaboration with Roc Nation, showcases the life and career of Jay-Z through six distinct zones. The front of the library is wrapped with his lyrics, creating an eye-catching display for visitors.
The exhibit was unveiled at a star-studded pre-opening party attended by Jay-Z, Beyoncé, and their loved ones, along with famous friends. The event featured a jazzy medley of Jay-Z hits performed by a band, adding to the excitement and anticipation surrounding the exhibit. While the surprise element may have been slightly compromised by speculative reports leading up to the event, the exhibit remains a worthy celebration of the music icon.
A Uniquely Brooklyn Story
Linda Johnson, CEO of the Brooklyn Public Library, emphasizes that the Book of HOV is not only a celebration of Jay-Z but also a testament to the cultural richness of Brooklyn. She believes that the exhibit will attract new visitors to the library, including young people who may not be familiar with the wide range of services offered. Johnson states, “JAY-Z’s story is a uniquely Brooklyn story, and it’s a privilege to host this exhibit created as a labor of love by Roc Nation and the people who’ve known and worked with him over the years.”
In addition to the exhibit, the Brooklyn Public Library announced the release of limited-edition library cards commemorating each of Jay-Z’s 13 solo albums. This unique collaboration between the library and Roc Nation aims to further engage the community and encourage patronage of the library’s services. Johnson highlights that patrons can not only borrow books but also vinyl records, musical instruments, sheet music, and even utilize the recording studio to create their own music or podcast.
Exploring the Book of HOV Exhibit
The Book of HOV exhibit features thousands of artifacts from all over the world, curated with the help of Roc Nation CEO Desiree Perez’s extensive collection. Perez had long desired to create a gallery showcasing her souvenirs, and the collaboration with the Brooklyn Public Library offered the perfect opportunity. The exhibit includes physical music reels, plaques, magazines and newspapers, concert setlists, rare photos, and one-of-a-kind artifacts like the guitar Jay-Z played at Glastonbury 2008, a defiant response to Noel Gallagher’s anti-rap comments.
The exhibit is divided into six zones, each named after a Jay-Z lyric, offering a thematic and investigative approach to his life and career. The non-linear structure allows visitors to explore different aspects of Jay-Z’s journey, rather than following a strict chronological order. The design process involved extensive research, including conversations with Jay-Z’s close friends and business peers, to gain insight into the various themes that would be explored.
The Six Zones of the Book of HOV
- Did It Without A Pen: This zone fills the library’s record room with 400 books that Jay-Z referenced throughout his career. It also showcases vinyl records of songs his producers sampled from, all available for borrowing.
- Win-Win: Highlighting Jay-Z’s philanthropic efforts, this zone explores his charitable endeavors and the impact he has made on communities.
- Business, Man: Focusing on Jay-Z’s entrepreneurship, this zone documents his ventures beyond the music industry, including his successful forays into fashion, sports management, and other business ventures.
- So Fly: Transformed into a paper plane palace, the library’s children’s space hosts this zone. Over 600 Brooklyn youth have designed custom paper planes, symbolizing the soaring aspirations and creativity fostered by Jay-Z’s music.
- HOV Did That: This sprawling mezzanine features rare photos and a blue-lit room filled with retro clips of Jay-Z discussing various topics that later manifested in his career.
- A Work of Art Already: This zone immerses visitors in the Black Album era, with large screens playing clips from that period and a life-size replica of Roc-A-Fella’s Baseline studios, where many of Jay-Z’s iconic tracks were recorded.
The Design Process and Collaboration
The design process for the Book of HOV exhibit took approximately six months, with the creative team at General Idea Agency leading the way. They worked closely with Roc Nation, the Brooklyn Public Library, and other production and design firms to bring the vision to life. The goal was to create an immersive and visually captivating experience for visitors while seamlessly integrating the exhibit into the existing space of the library.
Collaboration between Roc Nation and the library was key to the success of the project. The library provided invaluable support and contributed to the process, ensuring that the exhibit aligned with their mission and values. Both Linda Johnson, CEO of the Brooklyn Public Library, and the design team at General Idea Agency acknowledge the library’s instrumental role in making the exhibit a reality.
A Privileged Experience
While the public eagerly awaits Jay-Z’s reaction to the Book of HOV exhibit, one can only imagine the impact it will have on him. Scott Mirkin, the lead producer of ESM Productions, who has been involved in the installation of the exhibit since March, believes that Jay-Z’s smile will be a testament to the success of the exhibit. Mirkin notes that Jay-Z is often seen smiling and expresses his confidence that the exhibit will provide him with an amazing feeling.
The Book of HOV exhibit is not only a celebration of Jay-Z’s accomplishments but also an opportunity for the community to engage with his legacy. Through the collaboration between Roc Nation and the Brooklyn Public Library, visitors can explore the multifaceted journey of a music icon who has left an indelible mark on the world. It is an experience that transcends the boundaries of music and invites individuals to discover the power of passion, creativity, and perseverance.
As the Book of HOV continues to captivate audiences, it serves as a reminder that the library is not just a place for books but a hub of knowledge, inspiration, and creativity. The exhibit encourages young people to explore the library’s diverse offerings and discover their own passions, much like Jay-Z did on his path to success. With the limited-edition library cards commemorating each of his 13 solo albums, the collaboration between Jay-Z and the Brooklyn Public Library is destined to leave a lasting impact on both the community and the music industry.
So, if you find yourself in Brooklyn, make sure to visit the Brooklyn Public Library and immerse yourself in the extraordinary journey of Jay-Z, as told through the inspiring pages of the Book of HOV.
Rock-and-roll and roll event, whereby his heroes felt honored and appreciated.
The famous rockstar has been striving for the longest time, and now he inspires many artists. He has been a celebrity ranked in the all-star cast with Beyonce, his wife, Chris Rock, and many black stars like Barack Obama, the former black American president.
He inspired everyone in rock & roll and said he honors everyone who has been pushing since day one and never gives up. He said that he values hip-hop forever and ever every day. JAY-Z honored rock-and-roll, and he said hip-hop had been his most extraordinary milestone. He recalled that hip-hop was considered a fad, but he made it a significant subgenre that has many heroes to date.
He mentioned all the heroes that came to mind during this speech: Chuck D, LL Cool J, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane & KRS-One. These artists kept their faith, and eventually, their struggle is paying off.
They are winners of several awards and medals with great legendary moments. The best shout-out was to Dr. Gloria Carter, who bought a notebook, and Jay-Z’s sister Annie who inspired him to write the first rap on the notebook.
This article was penned by Jonathan P. Wright. Jonathan is a freelance writer for multiple mainstream publications and CVO of RADIOPUSHERS. You can read more of his work by clicking here.