...Thought it would be wise to re-post a conversation that Jay-Z had with Clash Magazine. He spoke so evasively...
Here's the jist of his conversation:
And when it comes to the subject matter of a record, is that you speaking or do you assume a character?
Even a record like 'American Gangster' wasn’t actually me looking to be the person in the film, it was my interpretation of the emotions I felt whilst watching it. I took emotions that related to my life from the movie scenes and talked about them in that way to make an album. It was a concept album, but not about the movie. It was influenced by the movie, so it was still me as me speaking and feeling, you know?
Do you feel exposed as an artist putting your emotions out there for people to dissect and experience?
Despite us sitting here and discussing things, I’m not really the type of person who can sit and talk about how they feel. You know, I’m bad at that and so is my whole family. We were raised to hold a lot in, so for me making music is like therapy. It gives me a chance to express my emotions and the things I have going on, so yeah I’m exposed. But it can’t be any other way.
You mention that people thought it was a diss song and this whole cycle of beefs seems to have consumed hip-hop culture. You’ve been embroiled in ones with the likes of Nas, Lil Wayne and the Game over the years yet on the record you say ‘we’re not in the same league, so how am I in your way’. It sounded as though you were becoming weary of it all.
It’s really just common sense. For many you have been making music and at the forefront for so long, people like, "Man, you gotta let the new guys in", and I’m like why? That’s never happened in the history of the world. It doesn’t work like that. You have to claim your spot. No one's in your way. If I was to stop making music tomorrow doesn’t mean suddenly there is this gap. You don’t get elected. The people decide where you are. Whether I’m here or not, if they want you to be at the top then the people will move me out the way. On you go...
Do you prefer playing large arena shows to small intimate ones?
They’re both equally great for different reasons. The intimate shows allow you to play the kind of records that won’t work in some sixty thousand deep venue, they’re just niche little things that maybe only fifteen hundred of your core fans truly know and understand. When it’s intimate, people are right there with you – they have a say in what works. But then the large show is great because of the sheer bigness of it. You start feeling like so... so big (laughs). I’m big! But it can be overwhelming, but it’s a fantastic feeling. I love it.
Are you looking forward to playing the arena dates with Coldplay then?
It’s going to be fantastic playing with them, especially with Chris (Martin) being such a close friend of mine. I’ve never played with them before, so it should be pretty cool. We’ve been friends for a long time now and we ended up doing a couple of tracks together and then last year we were both on the same festival bill and we thought about maybe doing something live as a unit...
So you like British music?
I like music! (laughs) Borders are irrelevant to me!