Today in Hip-Hop History: Jay-Z Dropped Debut Album ‘Reasonable Doubt’ 28 Years Ago

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On June 25, 1996, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, Dame Dash and Kareem “Biggs” Burke embarked on a creative journey that has morphed into a billion-dollar movement today with the release of the Reasonable Doubt LP.

Released courtesy of their independent Roc-A-Fella imprint, Jay’s premier album was promoted and sanctioned by the streets, with previews of the album via sampler cassettes hitting the streets in the winter of 1995. The album’s first single, “Ain’t No Nigga”, featuring a then-teenage Foxy Brown, was the introduction of “Jigga” to the industry that would eventually put him in the pole position of the rap game.

Other unforgettable tracks from one of the prototype LPs of the “mafia rap” era include, “Dead Presidents II,” “Can’t Knock The Hustle,” which features Mary J. Blige, “Brooklyn’s Finest” with the late Notorious B.I.G. and the introduction of Marcy young gun Memphis Bleek on “Coming Of Age”.

All-star production from the likes of DJ Premier, Irv Gotti, Ski and Clark Kent propelled the album along with Jay’s common street ethics surgically placed melodically on the beats.

Salute to Jay, Biggs, Dame, Pain In Da Ass and the rest of the old Roc-A-Fella staff for this timeless classic!

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Cam’ron Claims Jay-Z Loves Money More Than Hip-Hop Culture

Jay-Z decided to pay tribute to another G.O.A.T. last week. He performed “Public Service Announcement” during Tom Brady’s Patriot Hall of Fame induction ceremony, and was shown love by the ex-quarterback in return. Other high-profile celebrities were less than thrilled with Jay’s decision, however. Some criticized him for taking such a low level role in Brady’s ceremony. Others, like Cam’ron, went as far as to suggest that Jay-Z is indifferent to the hip-hop culture he helped popularize.

Cam’ron made this bold claim during a June 18 episode of his podcast, It Is What It Is. The Harlem rapper posited that Jay-Z does “not love” hip-hop the way that fans think he does. “I think he likes hip-hop a lot,” Cam explained. “I think he likes money more, and opportunities to take his brand to the next level.” He alluded to the Hip Hop 50 concerts that took place in 2023, and the fact that Jay-Z did not participate in the celebration. “As far as Hip Hop 50 is concerned, I don’t think he loves it,” the rapper added. “As much as somebody like Nas loves it.”

Read More: 50 Cent Brings Out Former Foe Cam’ron For Las Vegas Concert

Cam’ron Appreciates Jay-Z’s Business Acumen

The conversation stemmed from an Antonio Brown tweet criticizing Jay’s decision. Brown, a former teammate of Tom Brady’s, was much more blunt. He voiced disappointment in the “Empire State of Mind” rapper for choosing an induction ceremony over a concert that would have been attended by adoring fans. “Jay didn’t perform at any Hip Hop 50 concerts last year,” AB wrote. “Where the fans would’ve known every word to his songs. But he makes time to get ignored by rich folks smh.” Cam’ron has a more level-headed approach to the situation, and pointed out that Jay-Z may have performed with a greater purpose in mind.

“Sometimes you do something for somebody so they can do something for you,” Cam’ron asserted. “A favor for a favor.” The Dipset leader also gave Jay the benefit of the doubt, reminding viewers what Jay has done for the commercial appeal of the genre. “Jay-Z’s saying, ‘Nah we need to take this somewhere else,’” Cam added. “Let’s start getting our culture at halftime at the Super Bowl. You have to think about business as well.” It is the music business, after all.

Read More: Cam’ron Flees New York Amid City’s “Disgusting” Rat Problem

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Jay-Z Surprised The 2024 Tony Awards By Joining Alicia Keys For A Spirited ‘Empire State Of Mind’ Performance

Jay-Z doesn’t exactly have the strongest association with the Broadway world, but he still managed to wow at this weekend’s Tony Awards.

Alicia Keys’ musical Hell’s Kitchen was among this year’s nominees, so she performed during the ceremony. She began with a rendition of “Empire State Of Mind (Part II) Broken Down” before transitioning into the original “Empire State Of Mind,” during which Jay appeared on a giant screen to perform his part of the song, which got a big reaction from the audience. It turned out Jay was performing from the lobby outside of the venue, and Keys made her way out there to perform the track alongside Jay.

This actually isn’t Jay’s first Tonys experience: He was a producer of the musical Fela!, which is based on the life of Nigerian singer Fela Kuti. The show was one of the most-nominated at the 2010 Tonys, racking up 11 nods including for Best Musical. Jay said of the show at the time, “It’s an inspiration, about the power of music. Here’s a guy that’s on the other side of the world who was influenced by James Brown, who takes this thing and makes his own sort of genre of music. I just think it’s fascinating.”

Check out the performance above.

Antonio Brown Criticizes Jay-Z For Performing At Tom Brady Ceremony

Antonio Brown likes to talk. He will say anything about anybody it seems, and that includes his former teammates, Tom Brady. Brown and Brady only played a single game together, be the former has felt comfortable calling the latter “selfish.” AB has tried to make amends with the ex-QB, but his latest IG post isn’t going to help his case. The controversial figure criticized both Brady and Jay-Z for the show they put on at Brady’s Patriots Hall of Fame induction ceremony. And he wasn’t afraid to explain why.

For context, Jay-Z performed during Brady’s induction ceremony. The legendary rapper played “Public Service Announcement” as Brady entered the building, which was a nod to the fact that the quarterback played the song before games. Brady and Jay have been friendly over the years, with former calling Hov his favorite rapper. It all seemed harmless on the surface. Antonio Brown, however, had a different read. He took Jay-Z to task for participating in this event and ignoring others that he felt were worth the MC’s time. In particular, events that were tied to the 50th anniversary of hip-hop in 2023.

Read More: Antonio Brown Files For Bankruptcy

Antonio Brown Questioned Jay-Z’s Professional Priorities

“Jay didn’t perform at any Hip Hop 50 concerts last year,” Brown noted. “Where the fans would’ve known every word to his songs.” The former NFL star then twisted the knife by casting Jay-Z’s induction cameo in a racial light. “But he makes time to get ignored by rich white folks smh.” AB was not the only one who held this sentiment. Jay-Z was widely criticized for not taking part in the Hip Hop 50 concerts, especially considering many of them took place in the rapper’s home state. Jay has also been criticized for his deal with the NFL. Roc Nation partnered with the league in 2019, which led many to question whether he was dismissing Colin Kaepernick’s protests.

Jay-Z addressed the controversy during a New York Times interview in 2020. “We forget that Colin’s whole thing was to bring attention to social injustice,” the rapper stated. “In that case, this is a success. This is the next phase. There [are] two parts of protesting. You go outside and you protest, and then the company or the individual says, ‘I hear you. What do we do next?’” The NY legend hasn’t addressed Antonio Brown’s criticisms, and given his aloof approach to online interactions, he probably never will.

Read More: Jay-Z Called “Cap” On Alleged Beanie Sigel Betrayal, Joe Budden Reveals

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Oschino Thinks Either Jay-Z Or Joe Budden Is Lying About Beanie Sigel Situation

Oschino thinks something’s up with Joe Budden’s recent account of what Jay-Z texted him recently, which regarded their commentary on the former Roc-A-Fella rapper’s claims about Jay’s involvement in Beanie Sigel’s 2004 attempted murder case. For those unaware, Hov said that Oschino’s idea that he refused to stick up for Sigel in court is a lie, but his former colleague thinks that either the Roc Nation boss himself is lying or that the podcaster has something up his sleeve. It’s a bit of a complicated and contentious situation that probably won’t really escalate any further, but check out Oschino’s response down below to hear his take.

Furthermore, this is what Oschino had to say about Jay-Z’s alleged testimony in the Beanie Sigel case. “I came to court for Beanie when he allegedly shot somebody,” he told Say Cheese. “Jay-Z got on the stand and they said, ‘Are you gonna be responsible for him if we let him go?’ Jay-Z said, ‘No.’ I was there. This ain’t hearsay; this was me in the courtroom. I was just thinking, ‘What did he come to court for then?’

Read More: Beanie Sigel Denies Dissing Jay-Z On 50 Cent Collab “I Go Off”

Oschino’s Response To Jay-Z & Joe Budden

“If I got a homie and all I gotta say is, ‘I’m responsible for him for him to get out,’ I’m saying it every time,” Oschino continued concerning Jay-Z’s supposed choices. “The judge was trying to give him an out. He said, ‘No.’ And nobody didn’t say nothing, nobody flinched. Mind you, I’m a jail n***a so I’m looking around like, ‘Nobody not saying nothing?!’ Like it was normal […] Maybe I’m too street in my thinking and maybe he was being more responsible, but I was thinking, ‘Man, these boys is different.’”

Meanwhile, doubting Jay-Z aside, this is not Oschino’s only controversial opinion as of late. “First of all, Drake got a whole country behind him,” he said of the Toronto rapper’s beef with Kendrick Lamar. “Drake got the most hits. Girls like Drake. Kendrick can rap too, but I think he overrated, though. All of his songs are not hot to me. When Drake sings, I hate it. When Drake sings, I cut it off. I say, ‘Drake, don’t do this.’ When Kendrick Lamar sings on some of his songs, he tries to go too deep, I’m like… [unimpressed expression].”

Read More: Drake Fans Theorize He Was Taking A Shot At Joe Budden With His “One Trick Ponies” Post

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Oschino Thinks Either Jay-Z Or Joe Budden Is Lying About Beanie Sigel Situation

Oschino thinks something’s up with Joe Budden’s recent account of what Jay-Z texted him recently, which regarded their commentary on the former Roc-A-Fella rapper’s claims about Jay’s involvement in Beanie Sigel’s 2004 attempted murder case. For those unaware, Hov said that Oschino’s idea that he refused to stick up for Sigel in court is a lie, but his former colleague thinks that either the Roc Nation boss himself is lying or that the podcaster has something up his sleeve. It’s a bit of a complicated and contentious situation that probably won’t really escalate any further, but check out Oschino’s response down below to hear his take.

Furthermore, this is what Oschino had to say about Jay-Z’s alleged testimony in the Beanie Sigel case. “I came to court for Beanie when he allegedly shot somebody,” he told Say Cheese. “Jay-Z got on the stand and they said, ‘Are you gonna be responsible for him if we let him go?’ Jay-Z said, ‘No.’ I was there. This ain’t hearsay; this was me in the courtroom. I was just thinking, ‘What did he come to court for then?’

Read More: Beanie Sigel Denies Dissing Jay-Z On 50 Cent Collab “I Go Off”

Oschino’s Response To Jay-Z & Joe Budden

“If I got a homie and all I gotta say is, ‘I’m responsible for him for him to get out,’ I’m saying it every time,” Oschino continued concerning Jay-Z’s supposed choices. “The judge was trying to give him an out. He said, ‘No.’ And nobody didn’t say nothing, nobody flinched. Mind you, I’m a jail n***a so I’m looking around like, ‘Nobody not saying nothing?!’ Like it was normal […] Maybe I’m too street in my thinking and maybe he was being more responsible, but I was thinking, ‘Man, these boys is different.’”

Meanwhile, doubting Jay-Z aside, this is not Oschino’s only controversial opinion as of late. “First of all, Drake got a whole country behind him,” he said of the Toronto rapper’s beef with Kendrick Lamar. “Drake got the most hits. Girls like Drake. Kendrick can rap too, but I think he overrated, though. All of his songs are not hot to me. When Drake sings, I hate it. When Drake sings, I cut it off. I say, ‘Drake, don’t do this.’ When Kendrick Lamar sings on some of his songs, he tries to go too deep, I’m like… [unimpressed expression].”

Read More: Drake Fans Theorize He Was Taking A Shot At Joe Budden With His “One Trick Ponies” Post

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WATCH: JAY-Z Performs “PSA” as Entry Music for Tom Brady at Patriots Hall of Fame Ceremony

JAY-Z Delivers Opening Video for 2023 NBA All-Star Game

JAY-Z surprised the masses of New England Patriots fans who piled into the team’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony as he emerged from a smoke-filled stage to perform his classic anthem, “Public Service Announcement,” as Tom Brady’s entrance music.

Ahead of the second verse, Hov said, “Put one hand in the air for the GOAT, Mr. Tom Brady, tonight!” Brady would then emerge onto the field. “PSA” was Brady’s walk-in music during his career in New England. You can see the moment below.

The post WATCH: JAY-Z Performs “PSA” as Entry Music for Tom Brady at Patriots Hall of Fame Ceremony first appeared on The Source.

The post WATCH: JAY-Z Performs “PSA” as Entry Music for Tom Brady at Patriots Hall of Fame Ceremony appeared first on The Source.

Jay-Z Performed ‘Public Service Announcement’ At Tom Brady’s Patriots Hall Of Fame Induction

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When Tom Brady left the Patriots to join the Bucs, there were some tensions with the New England organization he helped transform into the NFL’s gold standard. However, there was never a doubt that eventually he would come back to Foxborough and be honored as the best player in franchise history.

Wednesday night was that night, as Patriots fans flocked to Gillette Stadium to see Brady inducted into the Patriots Hall of Fame. Typically, a team Hall of Fame ceremony just involves a halftime or postgame ceremony during the season, but someone of Brady’s stature commands something a bit more. That’s not just getting his own night during the offseason, but bringing out some big stars to help mark the occasion. That started with Massachusetts native John Cena narrating a video that kicked off the ceremony.

It continued with the most surprising appearance of the night, as none other than Jay-Z performed “Public Service Announcement” to introduce the GOAT to the stage.

I have to say, Jay-Z sounds great here and despite it being a brief appearance to do one song before a team Hall of Fame ceremony, he doesn’t mail it in at all. That — and the fact he pulled up at all — is an indicator of the power of Tom Brady, who has the respect of just about everyone across the sports and entertainment world for what he did on the football field and his incredible longevity of greatness.

Jay-Z Performs At Tom Brady’s Patriots Hall Of Fame Induction: Watch

Jay-Z has become the face of the NFL when it comes to musical affiliation. The rapper’s company, Roc Nation, entered a partnership with the league in 2019 that has played a role in several half time shows. It was still surprising, however, to see Hov take the stage himself, and perform during Tom Brady’s Patriots Hall of Fame induction. The Brooklyn legend came out and shocked the crowd by rapping his 2003 song “Public Service Announcement” while Brady entered the stadium. It was appreciated by music fans, but it was especially appreciated by Brady himself.

The quarterback has voiced his adoration for Jay-Z on multiple occasions. He told Mass.Live that he was a “big fan” of Hov in 2014, and “Public Service Announcement” was the song that he chose as his theme whenever he stepped on the field. In particular, the lyrics: “Allow me to reintroduce myself.” There’s some fitting parallels between both men. Both Brady and Jay retired at the peak of their powers. Both returned and proved that they still had what it took to compete, further validating their “GOAT” status. Brady and Jay-Z also attended a breakfast that was organized by Fanatics CEO Michael Rubin by in May.

Read More: JAY-Z Comes Under Fire For Educational Campaign In Philadelphia

Jay-Z Opened The Ceremony With Brady’s Walkout Song

“Public Service Announcement” is a crucial song in Jay-Z’s catalog. The rapper discussed its importance in his 2010 memoir Decoded, and the interaction that led to its creation. He recalled a Village Voice writer criticizing his embrace of materialism in his music, and wrote the verses as a response. “It was a test of creativity and wit,” he wrote in the memoir. “I call rhymes like the first verse on ‘PSA’ Easter-egg hunts. If you just listen to it once without paying attention, you’ll brush past some lines… [They] can offer more meaning and resonance every time you listen to them.” Brady has obviously listened multiple times. He even threw up Jay-Z’s Roc-A-Fella sign during the induction performance.

Brady thanked those attending, and those watching, in an Instagram post before the induction. “Coming back to New England to celebrate what WE accomplished was so special,” he wrote in the caption. “And it’s a day that I’ll never forget. Being able to spend time with teammates, family, friends, coaches… And most importantly all the fans of Patriot nation is something that I’ll never take for granted.”

Read More: Beyonce & JAY-Z’s Lack Of Recent Public Appearances Linked To Alleged Diddy Friendship By Industry Insider

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Why Is Jay-Z Facing Backlash For $300M Scholarship For Philadelphia Students?

This past weekend, Jay-Z and his company Roc Nation announced their “Dine & Learn” series to promote $300 million in scholarships for low-income Philadelphia households. The money is meant to help underprivileged youth bypass the public school system and attend prestigious private schools instead. On the surface, it seems like another of Jay-Z’s philanthropic ventures, maybe even an extension of his scholarship-giving Shawn Carter Foundation. But the Brooklyn-born rapper has come under fire for the seemingly selfless move. If you dig a little bit beneath the surface, the criticisms start to gain weight. All may not be as it seems with these latest Jay-Z-Roc Nation scholarships.

Read More: Rappers Who Launched Scholarship Programs

What Jay-Z & Roc Nation’s $300 Million Initiative Really Is

What many suspect is happening here is that Jay-Z is leveraging his influence and power to host and promote a 10-event series about a Republican-backed educational bill. These events aim to inform residents about Senate Bill 757, or the “Pennsylvania Award for Student Success” (PASS). This is what many perceive to essentially be a Republican school voucher program. The program would reportedly reroute $300 million in taxpayer dollars to fund charter and private schools.

On one hand, the program allows students to move out of an underfunded and failing school system. On the other, that’s $300 million that those same public schools will never see – and that private schools will essentially be handed. And then there’s the question of what will happen to those who don’t win any Jay-Z and Roc Nation-backed scholarships.

Jay-Z & Jeff Yass: An Odd Couple

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 05: Jay-Z attends the Los Angeles premiere of Sony Pictures’ “The Book Of Clarence” at Academy Museum of Motion Pictures on January 05, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Monica Schipper/WireImage)

Another strange part of this whole announcement is that it means Jay-Z is pairing up with Jeff Yass. The Philadelphia native is a billionaire conservative and a major investor in TikTok. Commentators have speculated that Yass influenced Trump’s side-switching on the TikTok ban bill that went through Congress earlier this year. After meeting with Yass at Mar-a-Lago in March, Trump flipped from supporting a ban on the app to opposing a ban.

Jeff Yass is also well-known for an anti-public school stance, pushing school choice policies and programs. Essentially, these policies and programs give families options for schooling beyond their local district. So, the public has been left wondering why Jay-Z would ever pair up with Yass. Critics argue that the PASS bill has an underhanded goal of diverting and exhausting public school funding. Why exactly would Jay-Z and Roc Nation support these scholarships?

Read More: Beyonce & Jay Z Giving Over $1M In Scholarships To High School Students

Roc Nation’s Position

Well, truthfully, all we have at the moment is Roc Nation’s public comments. The company’s CEO, Desiree Perez, told the media that “what we are backing is education…We’re just educating [people], which I would think everyone wants people to make informed decisions.” So, the company’s current stance is that they are simply spreading awareness for educational options in Philadelphia. Still, many city residents aren’t so sure a school voucher program is the correct way to handle the situation. Later in her HuffPost interview, Perez stated “The kids in these zip codes are suffering right now. If you have a better solution, aside from making them wait until the public school system can get it together with the funding they are receiving, I am all ears.”

The Philadephia public school system’s situation is quite complex, and the public has reacted with varying nuanced opinions on Jay-Z’s involvement. Some have said that letting some low-income youth attend private schools ultimately hurts the majority left behind. Others have said that Jay-Z is simply trying to help level the playing field since $300 million wouldn’t fix Philadelphia’s public schools. Amid this storm of public responses, it remains unclear what Jay-Z and Roc Nation’s motives are for the scholarships. All we have at this time is his CEO’s public statements.

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