To me, Jay-Z is the Greatest Rapper Of All Time. This point of this post is not to convince you of this — just background in why he’s the subject today.
Jay-Z’s first album, Reasonable Doubt, was largely slept on by the masses (including me), but was critically acclaimed at the time and later agreed upon as a classic.
His second album, In My Lifetime, Vol. 1, though still solid, wasn’t all that. At that time (1997), popular music was being dominated by a guy named Puff Daddy: shiny suits, glossy money talk and shiny suits. Anything that didn’t sound like Bad Boy music just didn’t register with the public. No fool himself, Jay-Z knew this, and we know he did: Jay was the opening act on Puffy’s No Way Out Tour that year.
Jay didn’t stay on for the whole tour; a few dates in, he had a conversation with Puff and excused himself from the tour, stating in an interview, “I felt like I was selling myself short.” Jay told the media that he’d be getting “into the office” to build his company, and the studio to make his next album.
Vol 2: Hard Knock Life came in 1998. When asked about the album, Jay-Z said that he’d gotten into a zone and felt like he put every guest artist and producer in the perfect place on each track of the album. Driven by the title track that sampled the Annie Broadway musical, Vol. 2 sold 5 million copies and moved Jay-Z from rap star to music superstar.
If I ever meet Jay-Z and get to ask him a question, it would be about this time period and the decision behind it. Because I guarantee you, the jump Jay-Z made from really good rapper to music and pop culture celebrity was not happenstance or talent or the taste of the public.
It was a decision.I guarantee you, the jump Jay-Z made from really good rapper to music and pop culture celebrity was not happenstance or talent or the taste of the public. It was a decision. Click To Tweet
For Your Game
- Game, talent, hard work and timing, alone or combined, will make you good, known, and appreciated — but they will not take you to “the next level” of your chosen profession. That can only happen when you decide you’re going there. Then it happens.
- It is impossible to make a decision to go to that next level — like the Leap that Jay-Z made in music — if your thoughts are dominated by your underwhelming past or seemingly hopeless present. You have to take your thoughts to a higher level, particularly with your own self-belief and your vision of what’s possible for you. ASAP Confidence and Bulletproof Mindset are made to help you with both.
- Great news: Your current situations — financially, physically, geographical, cultural, racial — have no effect on your ability to make a decision.
What decision do you need to make to take your next step? Reply and tell me about it.