Jay Z has spent almost two decades building a loyal and dedicated following, but Hov’s #1 fan isn’t someone who’s collected his extensive discography. In fact, she’s not even two years old yet.
“She’s my biggest fan. If no one bought the Magna Carta [album] — the fact that she loves it so much, it gives me the greatest joy,” Jay told Vanity Fair of his daughter Blue Ivy. “And that’s not like a cliché. I’m really serious.”
The rap mogul appears on the cover of the magazine’s November issue wearing a dapper white tuxedo jacket. And inside, Jay admitted it may be hard to determine where Blue gets her great musical ear from, after all her mom is Beyoncé.
“She does like her mother’s music — she watches [her concerts] on the computer every night,” he revealed. “But my album came out and I don’t know if Blue ever heard any of my music prior to this album — she’s only 18 months old and I don’t play my music around the house. But this album was new, so we played it. And she loves all the songs.”
According to Jay, little Blue likes MCHG so much that she actually makes song requests. “She plays a song and she goes, ‘More, Daddy, more … Daddy song,’ ” he told the mag. “She’s genuine. She’s honest because she doesn’t know it makes me happy, she just wants to hear it.”
The star rapper has made indelible marks in the worlds of sports, fashion and politics in addition to music, but he believes that his past as a drug-dealing teen actually helped prepare him to be a successful businessman.
“I know about budgets. I was a drug dealer. To be in a drug deal, you need to know what you can spend, what you need to re-up,” he explained. “Or if you want to start some sort of barbershop or car wash — those were the businesses back then. Things you can get in easily to get out of [that] life. At some point, you have to have an exit strategy, because your window is very small; you’re going to get locked up or you’re going to die.”
Hov said initially he didn’t feel any guilt about selling crack, but once he matured, he realized the negative effects that drugs had on his community.
“I started looking at the community on the whole, but in the beginning, no. I was thinking about surviving. I was thinking about improving my situation. I was thinking about buying clothes,” he recalled, explaining that even his mother knew of his dealings in the street. “All the mothers knew. It sounds like, ‘How could you let your son …’ but I’m telling you, it was normal.”
The Jay Z fans know now has come a long way since his days dealing crack in Brooklyn’s Marcy housing projects, but the rapper believes some things were just meant to be. When asked if he thought he’d be able to catch Bey’s attention if he had been say, a gas-station attendant, Hov didn’t waver. “If I’m as cool as I am, yes,” he said. “But she’s a charming Southern girl, you know, she’s not impressed. … But I would have definitely had to be this cool.”