Given all that’s gone on in Jay-Z’s life in the last little while — and his penchant for rapping about the art and businesses he owns over the rappers he sons — it can be easy to forget who he’s been beefing with. Believe it or not, Jigga does have old-school NYC rap beef, even if he tries to insulate himself from it with Tom Ford suits.
The list went down by one last night, though, as Jay buried the hatchet on a decades-long beef with Jaz-O. The rappers took a photo backstage at a 4:44 tour stop in Chicago alongside and producer No I.D. While the photo wasn’t exactly all smiles, it definitely seemed all good.
Like all good beefs, there was a time when Jay and Jaz were close. Jaz gave Jay a leg up in the world back before the days of Reasonable Doubt. Jaz tagged Jay to rap on his tracks “Hawaiian Sophie” and “The Originators.” Naturally, when the time came around for Jay to make his own music, he returned the favor.
Jigga tapped his then-friend to produce “Ain’t No N–ga,” and gave him a guest slot on “Bring It On.”
Jaz did so much for Jay that the rapper felt the need to return the favor. Given his new wealth and fame following his debut, he reached out to Jaz to offer a contract. Unfortunately for the duo, Jaz thought the contract was suspect and it clearly damaged their relationship. They started to beef, exchanging disses for nearly two decades.
Of course, Jay has had bigger issues on his mind of late. He had to get his marriage to Beyoncé back on track after he cheated on her — and it couldn’t have helped that the whole world was watching. In a recent interview with the New York Times, Jay explained why he cheated on his wife and how they got over it.
“You have to survive. So you go into survival mode and when you go into survival mode, what happens? You shut down all emotions,” he said. “So, even with women, you gonna shut down emotionally, so you can’t connect. In my case, like, it’s deep. And then all the things that happen from there: infidelity.”
It might not surprise you to learn that they got through it with music. Jay explained:
“We were using our art almost like a therapy session. And we started making music together.
And then the music she was making at that time was further along. So her album came out as opposed to the joint album that we were working on. Um, we still have a lot of that music. And this is what it became. There was never a point where it was like, ‘I’m making this album.’ I was right there the entire time.”
See The Photo
That said, beef is still beef. And Jay doesn’t need that negativity in his life. Though they’ve fought for a while, you wouldn’t know any of that from their photo at the United Center. It seems like Jay and Jaz have managed to put it in the past.
Check out the reunion up top. Are we ready to hear Jaz and Jay collabs? Do we need them after 4:44? Is Jay’s next move New Yawk Revivalism? Share how you feel about this beef’s end in the comments and be sure to SHARE this article.