Eminem Won't Be Joining In
Just as his wife Beyoncé trades her formerly bootylicious image for an annual spot on prime time Thanksgiving TV, Jay-Z has set out to distance himself from the lyrics of his younger days.
The incredibly financially successful rapper, who's now 40, tells the Wall Street Journal in a new interview about his new book, Decoded, that he no longer recognizes the young man who rapped about loving and leaving women.
He tells WSJ about parsing "Big Pimpin' for the book: "It was like, I can't believe I said that. And kept saying it. What kind of animal would say this sort of thing? Reading it is really harsh."
We appreciate Jay's maturity — and never want to glorify the misogyny often perpetuated in rap music — but his lyrics are comparatively tame. Eminem, who is a frequent collaborator of Jay's, has said far worse, more graphic things.
If he's apologizing for "Big Pimpin'", we think he'd have similar thoughts on 2002's "Pussy," featuring R. Kelly. We say he worries less about his early days and more about his vision for rap's future. He tells WSJ:
We have to find our way back to true emotion. This is going to sound so sappy, but love is the only thing that stands the test of time. "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill" was all about love. Andre 3000, "The Love Below." Even NWA, at its core, that was about love for a neighborhood. We're chasing a lot of sounds now, but I'm not hearing anyone's real voice. The emotion of where you are in your life. The mortgage scandal. People losing their jobs. I want to hear about that.
What do you think? Will you be buying Decoded? Do you think the music has evolved?
Watch the song that made, then embarrassed the jigga man below: