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Following the release of 4:44, Jay-Z continues to share intimate details of the marital turbulence he and Beyoncé have weathered. In a video titled “Footnotes for 4:44,” he, along with many other men of color, discuss toxic masculinity and its reverberations.
Jay-Z seems to be establishing a pattern of producing filmic epilogues to singles from the new album. After “The Story of O.J.” came “Footnotes for the Story of O.J.” Now Tidal users have an addendum to the title track, featuring Chris Rock, Will Smith, Kendrick Lamar, Chris Paul, Jesse Williams, Aziz Ansari, Mahershala Ali, Lil Rel, Meek Mill, as well as others. And while Jay-Z doesn’t delve into the specifics of their troubles, he offers an evocative metaphor:
“ ‘This is my real life. I just ran into this place, and we built this big, beautiful mansion of a relationship that wasn’t totally built on the 100 percent truth, and it starts cracking. Things start happening that the public can see,’ he says. ‘Then we had to get to a point of ‘Okay, tear this down and let’s start from the beginning’…It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done.’”
The rapper moreover alludes to the extent of his desperation—when, during a vacation, he begged Beyoncé not to leave him.
“What is happening to my body right now? Did I just say…‘Don’t leave’? All this is new for me,” Jay-Z reflects.
The fight to preserve his marriage was, he suggests, more formidable than coming of age in Marcy Projects and escaping gunfire. And it seems that part of the effort involved keeping Beyoncé in the loop early in the process of recording 4:44.
“We just got to a place where in order for this to work, this can’t be fake. Not one ounce. I’m not saying it wasn’t uncomfortable because obviously it was.”
I try not to become emotionally invested in too many celebrity relationships, but that’s not a possibility here. If Beyoncé wants her marriage to work, then I do too.
Note: As of now, most of the 4:44 material is exclusive to Tidal subscribers.
If you’re going to speculate about a star stepping out on their partner, you should ideally not pair them with one of their relatives. Because in this case, the “girl” Ashton Kutcher spent the day with was his cousin. Oops.
Nice try, Star, but Kutcher is, by all accounts, behaving. Besides, one would have to be an exceptional idiot to cheat on Mila Kunis.
Daddy Yankee is the first Latin artist to reach #1 on Spotify. What’s more—he beat Ed Sheeran!
“Being the first Latin artist to reach #1 in Spotify marks a precedent not only for my career but for the industry in general,” the Puerto Rican reggaeton artist wrote to the Associated Press. “The musical digital revolution has unified the world, and this is the proof. We are all in the same boat with no labels or stereotypes.”
If you have Spotify—you do have Spotify, right?—there’s a very easy and fitting way to celebrate Daddy Yankee’s achievement.
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