Rapper Jay-Z has just dropped his much anticipated album 4:44, in which he apologizes to his superstar wife, Beyoncé, and reveals his mother is a lesbian.
Ahead of its release not much was known about the album except that it might be a response to Beyoncé’s Lemonade. In Lemonade, Beyoncé revealed Jay’s infidelity and how she almost left him.
Jay-Z released 4:44 on his music streaming service Tidal and it didn’t take long for the album to get personal.
The first track Kill Jay Z refers to the infamous footage of Beyoncé’s sister attacking Jay in an elevator after the Met Ball in 2014.
‘You egg Solange on knowing all along all you had to say was you was wrong / You almost went Eric Benet let the baddest girl in the world get away / I don’t even know what to say, nigga never go Eric Benet,’ he raps on the opening track.
Eric Benet was married to Oscar winning actress Halle Berry but the marriage fell apart after he cheated on her.
In the title track 4:44, Jay raps: ‘I apologize often womanize / Took for my child to be bornSee through a woman’s eyes / Took for these natural twins to believe in miracles / Took me too long for this song / I don’t deserve you.’
But one of the most surprising revelations comes on the album’s third track, Smile, when Jay says his mom, Gloria Carter, is a lesbian.
‘Momma had 4 kids but she’s a lesbian/had to pretend so long that she’s a thesbian/Had to hide in the closet, so she medicate.
‘Society shame and the pain was too much to take/Cried tears of joy when you fell in love/Don’t matter to me if it’s a him or her.’
Jay’s mom then gets a feature role on the track with a spoken word performance about her sexuality.
Gloria Carter’s outro
Living in the shadow
Can you imagine what kind of life it is to live?
In the shadows people see you as happy and free
Because that’s what you want them to see
Living two lives, happy, but not free
You live in the shadows for fear of someone hurting your family or the person you love
The world is changing and they say it’s time to be free
But you live with the fear of just being me
Living in the shadow feels like the safe place to be
No harm for them, no harm for me
But life is short, and it’s time to be free
Love who you love, because life isn’t guaranteed