While JAY-Z’s discography is literally the library of a legend it isn’t perfect. He recently revealed that In My Lifetime, Vol. 1 still haunts him to this day.
As spotted on Hype Beast the Brooklyn, New York native made another rare appearance on social media to talk real Rap. Last week the conversation behind his second album became a hot topic for the Hip-Hop community. It started when one user tweeted a post regarding Hov’s most polarizing tracks. “Hot take: “Sunshine” by Jay-Z was fine and got an unnecessarily bad rap. Actually holds up better now than it did then”.
Somehow this landed on Questlove’s radar and his response upped the stakes. “Our main argument is his hate for Vol 1. He is embarrassed for trying to make a monster & not putting numbers up. But ALOT of this lp contains his best moments. Fight me @sc” he wrote. Surprisingly Hov chimed in on the conversation and made an admission concerning the effort that many feel is his most flawed effort. “Agreed . More so, I know what could have been, so it haunts me … streets is watching was the first song made !”
Naturally Jay’s response quickly went viral prompting more conversation to be had about Vol. 1. While the follow up LP did produce some classics (“Imaginary Player”, “Streets Is Watching” and “Friend or Foe ’98”) his attempts at cross over hits missed the mark but also made him look soft to the public. Additionally some of the accompanying visuals, namely the video for “Sunshine”, tarnished his reputation when it was clear he was trying to capture some of Puff Daddy’s “shiny suit” magic.
This is not the first time Hov has stepped outside being an artist and openly criticized Vol. 1 as fan. Back in 2013 he ranked all his albums up until that point (with Magna Carta Holy Grail being the last to be release during that time) on Life And Times and said “Sunshine kills this album…f***…”. His former partner Damon Dash has openly regretted doing that video claiming “it wasn’t our style.” You can see Dame point the blame to Hype Williams and Jay below.