There was speculation that Jay-Z's 13th studio album, 4:44, would be a response to Beyoncé's emotionally charged Lemonade, released in April of last year. And for once, the online speculation was warranted, because Jay-Z's album contains a laundry list of wrongdoings and shortcomings during his marriage to his superstar wife. It's his first album in four years, and he's ready to come clean.
4:44 dropped on TIDAL at midnight on June 30, and immediately listeners caught onto specific lines that directly address his wife's album and corroborate her cheating allegations. With the guidance of the album's coverage on Vulture, Genius, and iHeartRadio, we break down Jay's most damning (and apologetic) lyrics on the topic of infidelity.
"Kill Jay-Z" (Fun fact: This vulnerable track is the first on the album and sets the honest tone for the multi-track confessional.)
"But you gotta do better, boy, you owe it to Blue"
"You egged Solange on / Knowin' all along / All you had to say you was wrong"
"You almost went Eric Benét / Let the baddest girl in the world get away / I don't even know what else to say"
"Nah, JAY-Z / Bye, JAY-Z"
After, listen to Beyoncé's "Hold Up"
"Said: 'Don't embarrass me," instead of 'Be mine' / That was my proposal for us to go steady/ That was your 21st birthday, you mature faster than me / I wasn't ready, so I apologize"
"I apologize to all the woman whom I / Toyed with you emotions because I was emotionless"
"Thinkin' of all the time you wasted in on all this basic shit / So I apologize"
"And if my children knew, I don’t even know what I would do / If they ain’t look at me the same / I would prolly die with all the shame"
"'You did what with who?' / What good is a ménage à trois when you have a soulmate? / 'You risked that for Blue?'"
After, listen to Beyoncé's "Sorry" and "Pray You Catch Me"
"Family Feud" (Fun fact: Those are Beyoncé's vocals in the background singing the "amens".)
"Yeah, I’ll fuck up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky"
After, listen to Beyoncé's "Sorry"
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