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JAY-Z explains why he'll never sell his masters: “That Was the Fight of My Life”

JAY-Z: “My kids 'to see my work' If they decide to sell it then it's up to them.”

The Hip-Hop mogul also shares how he secured the ultimate deal with Def Jam

Jay-Z’s latest interview—a rare occasion with Gayle King—has given fans insight into his illustrious career, including his writing process, how he got the name “One-Take-HOV,” and more. In the latest sneak peek from the series, scheduled to premiere on Thursday (Oct 26), the businessman revealed why he's unlikely ever to sell his masters.

While touring the halls of the Brooklyn Library, the current location of his tribute exhibition, “The Book of HOV,” Hov explained that getting the rights to his music was one of the most significant battles of his career.

“I get why people do it,” he said. “I’ve been fortunate enough to make money in this place, but for me, that was the fight of my life.”

Jay continued, “From being an independent company from the beginning and then going through the Def Jam system, not really understanding how that works and them having my masters, then going back to Def Jam as the president and then saying, ‘Okay, I’ll do this job and part of this job is my masters [have] to revert back to me.

“I want my kids to see my work. If they decide to sell it, then it’s up to them.”

Back in 2021, Hov witnessed a surge in the trend of artists selling the rights to their music. Notable stars such as Metro Boomin, Justin Bieber, Future, and even Dr. Dre opted to sell partial or complete rights to their music within this year alone.


Elsewhere, Jay-Z opened up about his 11-year-old daughter Blue Ivy:

“She used to be frontin’ on me a little bit,” JAY-Z, 53, told King, 68, when asked if the pre-teen thinks he's cool. “But [now] I catch her. I catch her in the corner, you know? Now she asks me, you know, if this is cool, if her sneakers [are cool].”

King then clarified, “She wants your advice?” to which the mogul (real name Shawn Carter) responded, “Yeah, yeah, yeah.”

Watch the first part of Jay-Z’s interview with Gayle King up top.


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