Why You'll Like It: Detailed Rap Critique. Inside look into a rapper's creative process.
The layout of this book is AMAZING! I'm not going to lie, I had low expectations about reading this memoir. When finished, I found myself pleasantly surprised and shocked at how much I enjoyed it. Jay-Z has been around A LONG TIME, but he was never one of my favorite rappers. Anytime someone (in the old days) beefed with Jay-Z, I was always rooting for the other guy. Those days have long since past and most of those guys are not putting out any music (or not around anymore for various reasons) and Jay-Z is still here and thriving.
The greatest strength found in this book was showing why Jay-Z can wear gym shoes in the boardroom. Jay-Z talks about his work ethic. He goes in length about what he looks for when signing stars and why a lot of stars do not thrive in his company. It made me see why Beyonce and him make a really formidable team because they are passionate perfectionists and make sure the meticulous details of their vision is realized.
I liked that Jay-Z talked about growing up and how influential rap was in his life, how beefs get started, and a look at his lyrics. He explains how he writes and explains that his lyrics go deeper than just hearing a song in passing.
He talks about how he gives back to his community and hates when people assume because "he's made it"--he has abandoned the needs of the black community. Jay-Z clears up a lot of misconceptions about use of language, colloquialism, and the n-word in his lyrics. His last piece about having a conversation with Oprah about the use of the n-word was open, honest, and stays with you long after you finish the book. This book inspired in me a new appreciation of rap, a deeper look at marketing of the rap industry, and a new found respect for Jay-Z.