Jay Z (born Shawn Corey Carter; 4.12.1969) Jay Z is an American rapper, as well being former CEO of the legendary hip-hop record labels, Def Jam Recordings and Roc-A-Fella Records.
Net Worth: Jay Z has a net worth of $550 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth (2014)
Childhood: Jay Z was raised in the Bedford-Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn, New York. He attended George Westinghouse Information Technology High School, a school that he shared with Busta Rhymes and The Notorious B.I.G. Jay Z was never a successful academic, and he was involved in drug dealing whilst at school. Jay Z first got into music when his mother bought him a boom box for his birthday when he was young. He started out by freestyling and writing rhymes, taking part in a number of battles. It has been reported that he has battled Busta Rhymes, DMX and Bizzy Bone, of Bone Thugs 'N' Harmony. Reputedly, it was his victorious battle against Zai that caught the attention of a number of record labels.
Musical Career: At the start of his career, Jay Z formed Roc-A-Fella Records with Kareem Biggs and Damon Dash. His own debut album was released on the label. Reasonable Doubt featured production from Clark Kent and DJ Premier, as well as an offering from The Notorious B.I.G. In 1997, Roc-A-Fella forged a distribution deal with Def Jam and Jay Z released his second solo album, In My Lifetime, Vol.1 that same year. The album had Sean Combs (better known as Puff Daddy, or P.Diddy) on production duties. The next year, Jay Z released Vol.2. Hard Knock Life. The lead single from the album, 'Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)' was a huge hit for the rapper. With producers such as Timbaland and Swizz Beatz on board, the album went on to sell over 8 million copies across the globe. 1999 saw Jay Z release Vol.3 Life and Times of S. Carter. The album has been certified three times platinum and launched the hit single 'Big Pimpin'. In 2000, Roc-A-Fella released a compilation designed to celebrate the talent that they had been nurturing as a label. Jay Z appeared on The Dynasty: Roc La Familia, which sold over 2 million copies in the USA. Jay Z's next solo album, The Blueprint, was released in 2001 and is considered one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time, by many. Kanye West produced a number of tracks from the album, which launched Kanye's musical career. Following on the titular theme, Jay Z released The Blueprint2: The Gift and The Curse. The double album launched two hit singles, 'Bonnie & Clyde' (which featured Beyoncé Knowles of Destiny's Child) and 'Excuse Me Miss'. The album also featured 'A Dream', a track recorded with Faith Evans. In 2003, Jay Z released The Black Album, after touring with the likes of Sean Paul and 50 Cent. He worked with a number of producers on the album, including Rick Rubin, Kanye West and Eminem. The album featured the massive global hit, ''99 Problems.' The vocals from the album later featured in Danger Mouse's influential underground remix project, The Grey Album, in which he mixed Jay Z's vocal with the instrumentals from the Beatles' The White Album. In 2004, Jay Z collaborated with Linkin Park, on a project called Collision Course. They performed 'Numb / Encore' at the Grammy Awards, where they won the Best Rap / Sung Collaboration song. Despite announcing his retirement in November 2003, at a huge Madison Square Gardens charity concert (which also featured Mary J. Blige, Pharrell Williams and Ghostface Killah), Jay Z released Kingdom Come in 2006. His comeback single, 'Show Me What You Got' was accompanied by a video by acclaimed director, Hype Williams. In 2007, Jay Z's tenth album, American Gangster was released. The album was inspired by the film of the same name, though it is not the official soundtrack to the film. In 2008, amid much controversy, Jay Z was chosen to headline Glastonbury Festival. In response to public criticism from Noel Gallagher of Oasis, Jay Z walked onstage at the event, playing the Oasis song, 'Wonderwall'. In 2009, Jay Z released his eleventh album 'The Blueprint 3', which overall was met with positive reviews and did well commercially; the album debuted at number one in the Billboard 200 selling 476,000 copies in its first week. As it was Jay Z's eleventh album to debut at number one, he broke a record that he'd previously shared with Elvis Presley. In 2011 Jay Z and Kanye West brought out collaborative album 'Watch The Throne' which received mostly positive reviews upon release. The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 charts, selling 436,000 in its first week in the United States. It's Jay-Z's 12th number one album and West's fifth. The album did incredibly well in many end of year album lists. Jay Z followed 'Watch The Throne' in 2013 with 'Magna Carta Holy Grail', which debuted at number one in the Billboard 200, selling 528,000 copies in its first week, exceeding expectations of it selling 350,000 to 400,000 copies. Despite the commercial success, 'Magna Carta...' was met with mixed reviews from critics. Justin Timberlake featured on the song 'Holy Grail'.
Personal Life: Jay Z married his long-term girlfriend, Beyoncé Knowles in April 2008. Despite both their high celebrity statuses, they chose for their marriage to take place in a secret wedding ceremony without publicity. Since 2008, Jay Z's influence and power in the industry have grown year on year. There have been many rumours circulated surrounding his links to the Illuminati. On January 7, 2012 Jay Z and his wife Beyonce welcomed their first child, a daughter named Blue Ivy Carter.
Jay-Z is yet to respond to Abramovic's criticism.
Marina Abramovic, the Serbian performance artist, has claimed Jay-Z "used her" in her music video for his song Picasso Baby in 2013. In the promo, Abramovic performed her work The Artist Is Present, sitting across table from embers of the public and holding her gaze.
Abramovic says Jay-Z used her in his video for Picasso Baby
Speaking with Spike magazine, Abramovic said that once Jay-Z arrived at MoMa, where her exhibition took place, she felt the experience only benefitted in.
Continue reading: Performance Artist Marina Abramovic Claims: "Jay-Z Used Me"
Ciara was performing in Atlanta on Wednesday (13th May) when she accidentally kicked a member of the audience in the face.
Ciara accidentally kicked a fan in the face whilst performing in at the Center Stage Theater in Atlanta on Wednesday (13th May). The 'Body Party' singer is currently on her Jackie album tour.
Ciara accidentally kicked a fan in the face whilst performing in Atlanta.
The study found there had been three music revolutions since the 1950s.
A study by the University of London and Imperial College has concluded that the emergence of hip hop has had the biggest impact on the charts of any genre since the 1950s. The study also found that the importance of The Beatles may have been overstated, suggesting that the fab five did not spark a musical revolution.
The Beatles may not have been that revolutionary
The study found there were three musical revolutions on the charts, the first being in 1964 with the rise of rock and roll bands such as The Beatles. The second was in the mid 80s with the use of synthesisers and drum machines, while the third came in 1991 when rap and hip-hop infiltrated the mainstream charts.
Continue reading: Scientific Study Concludes Hip Hop Was More Impactful Than The Beatles
Beyonce Knowles and Jay Z - A variety of stars turned out in style for the MET Gala 2015 and the opening of 'China: Through The Looking Glass' which was held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, New York, United States - Monday 4th May 2015
So long, Grooveshark, it's been real.
With all the fuss around Spotify and Jay Z’s streaming service Tidal, other, similarly nautical services may have gone slightly under the radar. This includes Grooveshark, a decade-old service, which closed down this week, with a final message to subscribers.
‘Tidal X: Jay Z B-Sides’ will hit on May 13th.
If you ask most people how they think Jay-Z’s Tidal service is doing, the response will probably be something along the lines of 'not great'. Of course if you asked Jay-Z himself, you’d hear a different story. But facts and figures aside, the rapper turned businessman has just announced he’ll be playing a free concert for Tidal subscribers next month, featuring some of his rarest tracks.
The rapper re-launched the streaming service last month.
Titled ‘Tidal X: Jay Z B-Sides’ the show will stream live from New York on May 13th and see the rapper performing B-sides and other less known tracks. Tidal subscribers are also being given the chance to win tickets to the performance by submitting a playlist on Tidal and sharing it on Twitter with the hashtag #TIDALXJAYZ.
Jay-Z doesn't tweet much, but when he does you better listen.
Infrequent tweeter Jay-Z took to Twitter on Sunday to drop a few #TidalFacts about his streaming service. The mogul has been forced to defend the service, which was launched last month, against those who have already branded it a ‘flop’.
Jay-Z relaunched Tidal last month.
‘Stream of consciousness coming in 5, 4, 3, 2… #TidalFacts’, Jay began his Twitter tirade. Before telling followers, ‘Tidal is doing just fine. We have over 770,000 subs. We have been in business less than one month.’
Continue reading: Jay-Z Takes To Twitter To Defend Tidal, "We Are Here For The Long Haul"
White will play the Fargo Theatre in Fargo, North Dakota on Sunday night (April 26th).
The final show of Jack White’s five date acoustic tour will be streamed on Jay-Z’s Tidal platform, the singer has announced, with the performance remaining on the service as an on-demand feature. The show is White’s last gig before he takes a break from live performing.
White is taking a break from performing live.
White will play Fargo, North Dakota's Fargo Theatre on Sunday evening (April 26th) at 8:30 p.m. local time. The gig marks the end of the Lazaretto singer’s five date acoustic tour which has also seen him visit Anchorage, Alaska; Boise, Idaho; Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Rapid City, South Dakota.
Continue reading: Final Show Of Jack White's Acoustic Tour To Stream On Tidal
Tina Knowles married Richard Lawson on April 12th.
Two weeks after her mother Tina Knowles tied the knot with Richard Lawson, Beyoncé has shared intimate snaps from the big day, showing off her not one but two bridesmaids dresses. Bey's mother Tina married the 68 year old actor on board a yacht on April 12th, surrounded by the couple’s friends and family.
Beyoncé has been sharing intimate pictures from her mother’s big day.
Beyoncé shared the wedding images on Tumblr, revealing her two bridesmaids dresses for the occasion. In one group photo (which shows the wedding party all sticking their tongues out) Beyoncé is wearing a form-fitting white lace dress with a plunging neckline. The singer also sports a flower headdress, in keeping with the wedding's bo-ho theme.
Blue Ivy gave her seal of approval to her grandmother's relationship and even suggested she get married!
Tina Knowles, the mother of Beyoncé Knowles, has revealed how her granddaughter helped her down the aisle. 61-year-old Tina revealed how Blue Ivy, Beyoncé's daughter with rapper Jay-Z, prompted Tina and her boyfriend, Richard Lawson, to seriously think about getting married.
Tina Knowles and Richard Lawson were encouraged to marry by Blue Ivy.
It's been a bad start to life for Tidal, with its mobile app tanking and now Kanye, one of its supporters, apparently deleting all mentions of it from his Twitter feed.
Less than a month after its star-studded New York re-launch, the subscription-only streaming service Tidal is showing early signs that it’s struggling. It’s already tanked on the app store, falling out of the top 700 iPhone downloads chart, and now it appears that Kanye West has deleted all references he’s made to the service on social media.
On Wednesday (April 22nd) Complex reported that the rapper had erased all mentions he’s made to Tidal on Twitter, despite being one of the most prominent supporters of the re-launch, standing alongside Jay Z at the famous press conference on March 30th and appearing in several ad spots for it subsequently. He also changed his profile picture from Tidal’s logo back to the front cover of his 2010 album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.
Jay Z re-launched Tidal last month, but it's struggling less than a month later
Continue reading: Kanye West Deletes All Tweets Mentioning Tidal
The recently relaunched, subscription-only Tidal has divided mainstream music stars, with folk rockers Mumford & Sons the latest to attack it.
In a new interview with The Daily Beast, lead singer Marcus Mumford was insistent that his band has no intention of being one of the big name artists to abandon Spotify in favour of the subscription-only service Tidal, which was re-launched by a galaxy of stars at a New York press conference at the end of March.
Mumford & Sons performing live
Continue reading: Mumford & Sons Blast Jay Z's 'Tidal'
The rap megastar at the centre of the Tidal streaming re-launch has removed his debut album from Spotify.
The much discussed Tidal revolution seems to already be taking effect. Having purchased the new streaming service as part of a joint venture and re-launching it as an “artist friendly” business model, Jay Z has removed his 1996 debut album Reasonable Doubt from Spotify.
The rapper removed his album overnight between Monday and Tuesday, and it is currently unavailable to stream in the US and Canada. It is, for the moment, still accessible for UK users. Instead, North American fans can find it on – you guessed it – Tidal.
Jay Z has removed his debut album 'Reasonable Doubt' from Spotify
Continue reading: Jay Z Removes 'Reasonable Doubt' Album From Spotify, Places It On Tidal
Rihanna backed Jay Z and her LGBT fans in Indiana.
Rihanna has dropped a brand new track, the poetically titled American Oxygen, and in the process, declared her allegiance for Jay Z's new streaming service, Tidal. The track is Rihanna's take on the "American dream," but you've probably guessed this from the title already.
Rihanna has also stepped up in support of Jay Z's new service.
The news here is that Rihanna, just like Beyonce before her and Madonna before that has lent her support for Jay Z's artist-friendly alternative to services like Spotify. On Saturday, Beyoncé also debuted her new track Die With You exclusively on the site. American Oxygen is only available to Tidal subscribers, whose numbers are still disappointingly small. Maybe it's the $10 subscription fee?
Continue reading: Rihanna Backs Jay Z with New Track "American Oxygen"
Ri-Ri has followed in the footsteps of Beyonce by releasing her new music exclusively on Jay-Z’s streaming service.
On Saturday night Rihanna debuted her new song ‘American Oxygen’ at the March Madness Music Festival in Indianapolis. But no sooner than fans could scourer the internet for a clip of Ri-Ri performing the track, the full studio version dropped...on Jay Z’s streaming service Tidal.
If you’re desperate to hear Rihanna’s new track it might be time to buy a Tidal subscription.
Yes, following Beyonce who, as an anniversary gift to her husband, made her track 'Die With You' available exclusively on Tidal, Rihanna has made sure her latest song will only be heard by Jay-Z’s subscribers.