Jay-Z For Vanity Fair Magazine; Looks Dapper In Tom Ford

jay-z-november-2013-cover

He went from rags to riches, the street corner to the corner office, the streets to the boardroom, Marcy Project’s to the cover of Vanity Fair’s November 2013 issue. On the cover, Jigga looks dapper in Tom Ford. For the cover story, Jigga was interviewed by the publication’s contributing editor Lisa Robinson. He talked about Blue Ivy being his biggest fan, dealing drugs, his rough upbringings, and much more. Below are some highlights:

On his 18-month-old daughter Blue Ivy listening to his music and Beyoncé saying that she prefers Jay-Z’s music:

That’s not true. She does like her mother’s music—she watches [Beyoncé’s concerts] on the computer every night. 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. She plays a song and she goes, ‘More, Daddy, more . . . Daddy song.’ 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. And that’s not like a cliché. I’m really serious. Just to see her—‘Daddy song, more, Daddy.’ She’s genuine, she’s honest, because she doesn’t know it makes me happy. She just wants to hear it.”

His mother knew he was dealing drugs as a teenager:

but we never really had those conversations. We just pretty much ignored it. But she knew. All the mothers knew. It sounds like ‘How could you let your son . . . ’ but I’m telling you, it was normal.”

How dealing drugs taught him a few things as far as business and having an exit strategy:

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. 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.”

On his rough upbringings:

We were living in a tough situation, but my mother managed; she juggled. Sometimes we’d pay the light bill, sometimes we paid the phone, sometimes the gas went off. We weren’t starving—we were eating, we were O.K. But it was things like you didn’t want to be embarrassed when you went to school; you didn’t want to have dirty sneakers or wear the same clothes over again.”

On crack over flooding his community when he was growing up:

crack was everywhere—it was inescapable. There wasn’t any place you could go for isolation or a break. You go in the hallway; [there are] crackheads in the hallway. You look out in the puddles on the curbs—crack vials are littered in the side of the curbs. You could smell it in the hallways, that putrid smell; I can’t explain it, but it’s still in my mind when I think about it.”

Read the interview in its entirety at Vanity Fair.

Photos Credit: MARIO TESTINO

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