People who think hip-hop is “guns and bitches” anger me. Take a look at this photo; this is what hip-hop is all about. Although I may be biased as a rap fan, to me, Jay-Z is one of the most influential figures of the 21st century so far. This man went from dealing crack on the streets of Brooklyn, dropping out of high school and shooting his own brother over a feud about jewelry, to meeting the president. In many aspects, hip-hop saved his life (word to Lupe).
Shawn Carter began freestyling at an early age and began working his way up the up-coming and buzzing hip-hop scene in New York, that was growing large enough to rival the West Coast, with The Notorious B.I.G, Big Daddy Kane and LL Cool J already established stars. With his foot firmly in the door, Jay-Z never relented and showed the true power hip-hop can have over the world and began his journey to becoming one of the richest men on the planet. Purely through the influence his music had on the people of New York (and eventually globally) he built himself opportunities to create
a two record labels, buy and relocate a baseball team, design a clothing range, write a book and start a real estate business. Oh, and the privilege of boning Beyonce every night… His hold on the music industry has also led to the discovery and rise of international superstars such as, Rihanna, Kanye West, Rita Ora and J. Cole.
An ex-crack dealer shaking hands and fraternizing with the President of America. Only in hip-hop. In the words of the late Biggie Smalls, “We never thought hip-hop would take it this far“.
Sidebar: See what Jay actually means to his home city. Its unbelievable.