Jan 172012

The two clippings below have been duck taped to my college dorm walls for the last two and a half years; initially my hands cut them out of The Rolling Stone because of the pure amount of BOSS that Jay-Z was omitting, (honestly, I just hoped it would make me look trendy to my new college buddies). After every semester though, I found myself delicately peeling the tape off of the wall and reapplying it to my next dusty, collegiate habitat.

But Jay-Z is more than these two pictures; he’s transcended from a hustler and an underdog with a blueprint to the encored artist who conquered Madison Square, the tycoon of Roc-a-fella Records, the man who somehow tied down Beyonce Knowles, and finally, the father of his baby girl. Of his generation, Jay-Z is unique: his struggle has never been questioned, his flow a constant, and his persona demanding incessant respect from peers.

Jay-Z has been many a man, has written countless verses, and has led an affluent life an overwhelming majority of us can barely comprehend, but his most pride and happiness comes from the birth of his child: “the most amazing feeling I feel/words can’t describe the feeling, for real/baby I paint the sky blue/my greatest creation was you, you: Glory.”

The hook above is from “Glory,” Jay’s song about his daughter. The track summates a simple point of life in three minutes and 42 seconds, expressed by the man that up until a week or so ago, has had everything but a child: “life is a gift, love, open it up/you’re a child of destiny/you’re the child of my destiny,” (Glory).

Maybe there is a reason I’ve kept his now scratched, antiqued photo on my wall for so long: Jay-Z is a reminder that with all of the material items a human may attain, the revenge they may compel upon their enemies, and the praise they may receive from fans, the gift of love and living is the ultimate prize.

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