Alright ya’ll the album has finally dropped and it was so much more than I expected! Jay-Z touched on every aspect of his life. Yes, he’s done that before but this time he’s opening up in a more meaningful, thought provoking way and I appreciate it!
So let’s break this album down…
Kill Jay Z
Jay Z addresses himself, his ego, Kanye, and his infidelity to Beyonce’ in this track. The internet has gone crazy over this track because of the following lyrics: “You egged Solange on – Knowing all along all you had to say was u was wrong – you almost went Eric Benet’ – let the baddest girl in the world get away – I don’t even know what else to say – nigga never go Eric Benet.” In just those few words Jay-Z addressed the infidelity, and the Solange elevator incident and set the internet ablaze!
The Story of OJ
This is my favorite track on the album. Jay-Z touched on so many of the things that plague the black community in this song from how we handle money, to how we represent ourselves and our community. Jay’s lyrics flow effortlessly over a smooth, jazzy NY hip-hop beat as he schools us on investments. He’s challenging our thought processes and motivations behind the choices we make. ” Wanna know what’s more important than throwing away money at a strip club? CREDIT.” -Jay Z
Jay Z shows his mom some major love on this track. He addressed her homosexuality and the pain she went through trying to hide her sexuality during his younger years. In typical Jay Z fashion, he talks about money, friendships, and drops in a bit of shit talking as well but that doesn’t take away from the message. His mother, Gloria Carter, talks about her life hiding her sexuality with a poem at the end of the song.
Caught Their Eyes
in this one, Jay Z talks about the snakes in the industry in this track. In my opinion, Jay Z is sharing his current life experiences on this one – what it’s like to navigate the music industry. He mentions Prince and the greed that surrounded him in life. He’s sharing this industry through his eyes. So far, every track on the album has had meaning, layers, and depth….I’m impressed!
Jay Z said he woke up at 4:44am to write this song, so I was wrong – I thought the twins were born at 4:44am. Moving on, this track definitely feels like some shit that you’d be thinking about at 4:44am. We’ve all experienced those nights we’ve sat thinking about all of our past mistakes and the people we’ve caused pain – that’s 4:44. Jay takes us deeper into his relationship and marriage to Beyonce’ and all of his failures as a man, and a husband. It’s touching to hear him express his fear of Blue learning of his dirt and thinking less of him. This is some good shit, partly because we’ve never seen Jay-Z so vulnerable. This is my second favorite track on the album.
This track is definitely old school Jay Z – all about the money, and the competition. He addresses the current state of rap and his place in the tapestry. I enjoyed the flow, the instrumentals, and Beyonce’s vocals. One word for this one….NICE!
Bam with the Damian Marley feature is so LIT! Jay is coming for all the trash that is in the industry. He takes a possible dig at Kanye and keeps it moving. The track is quick, straight to the point, and head bob worthy….BAM!
“I don’t post no threats on the internet – I just pose a threat – I don’t be on the gram going ham giving information to the pork – that’s all spam…..ya’ll stuck in La La Land.” Jay said, “Ya’ll got the same fucking flows – I don’t know who is who.” LOVE IT! Jay is giving us more on the fuckery in the rap industry today. He’s exposing these fake artists that so many put in they top 10. Tracks like this give me hope! Maybe a new era in hip hop is about to be ushered in. Jay is pointing them in the right direction with this one.
Jay begins the track with a snatch back to hold hip hop. Marcy Me is about where Jay came from but it’s also a nice nod to old school rap and it’s origins. If I may just pause for a minute and mention the artistic zone No ID was in when he did this entire album! Marcy Me is yet another well produced, easy to listen to track, another one of my favorites. As a true hip hop old head, I appreciate this track. XOX-fucking-O!
What’s your legacy? Jay Z provokes thought with the last track on the album. What are we leaving for those who come next? He is promoting black excellence with this one and reminding us that no matter how much or how little we have, we will still leave a legacy. Jay touches on the impact your legacy, good or bad, will have on future generations. We have to make conscious decisions, that’s what Legacy is all about. At the end of this song all I could say was, “Dag, that was good.”
I’ll be the first to say the 4:44 album is Jay-Z’s best yet; It’s a piece of artistic work with a message. 4:44 shows his age and maturity, it’s thought provoking without being too preachy, it’s 100% Black but still authentic Jay-Z. The album’s sound is unique, and the content is rich and layered. You will be riding to some of these tracks far beyond 2017, don’t doubt it.
If you haven’t heard the album yet you need to stop tripping about Tidal and go check it out.