Rumors and gossip have been a part of the media since the first newspapers started rolling off the printing presses. Speculation sells, the slightest possibility of truth can light the match of public interest.
JAY-Z knows about rumors since the hottest chick in the game started wearing his chain he's been accused of cheating with Rihanna, cheating with Rita Ora, every year someone reports that his marriage is falling apart. And don’t forget he supposedly has a son with a woman he banished to a private island. The stories are easy to dismiss due to a lack of credibility, but now the "insider source" for Jay’s latest infidelity rumors is coming from Beyoncé.
Lemonade has produced more think pieces than when Nas said hip hop was dead, but a major topic of discussion has been Becky, her good hair, and JAY-Z’s assumed philandering. Beyoncé does an excellent job alluding to the allegations without clearly stating if any vows were broken in her real life, all we can do is speculate. And speculate we have.
A rumor recently surfaced that JAY-Z is working on a new album, one that will be a response to Lemonade. My inner conspiracy theorist wants to vomit at the possibility that this could be a real thing. I can’t imagine Beyoncé recording Lemonade without Jay having any knowledge of the album's content. Beyoncé may be able to record music and videos away from the public eye but there’s no way her husband is in the dark. Lemonade is an album that would take millions to make, not to mention working with HBO and the Super Bowl - it was released as an exclusive on the streaming service he owns. Can you imagine Jay Z being caught off guard by “Don’t Hurt Yourself?” So it’s safe to assume that even if the album is inspired by actual events, he was well aware of the themes and content long before we were. It wouldn't be difficult for the two to coordinate a plan to turn their marriage into a musical.
Remember when there was the talk of the two doing a joint album? No one was eager to hear 14 tracks of “Crazy In Love” but the world loves drama, gossip to sip with their tea, and perhaps the couple has found the perfect way to runneth over the teacups. Instead of going on Love & Hip Hop to fight in front of cameras, the two could create their own storyline into two separate albums. The "woman so scorned she blasted her superstar husband in public" storyline may be entertaining, but Jay is a chess player, a hustler turned businessman who sleeps with one eye open. Hov isn’t the one to be caught slipping, and Beyoncé's perhaps even more strategically brilliant. These two really are Bonnie and Clyde.
Just think about it. From a publicity standpoint, Jay’s album will sell simply to hear the other side. If you think Beyoncé’s tour tickets are expensive now just wait until the Jay and Bey Reconciliation Tour, your wallets will weep.
In his immense catalog, JAY-Z only has a handful of songs you could call emotional. There’s ice in his veins with a heart colder than a snowman eating a Wendy’s frosty. This is a man who made a song cry before any tears fell from his own eyes. Solange attacked him in an elevator and he walked out into public twenty seconds later with a face made of stone.
Drake has every emotion that Jay lacks. “Soon You’ll Understand” might be his most vulnerable record and that was 16 years ago. I’m here for soulful samples and sincere feelings but I don’t know if Jay is capable of tapping into that side of himself. I don’t need him to try and make hip-hop’s Confessions, the idea of punchlines about Becky makes me queasy.
While Magna Carta was far from his strongest post-retirement effort, “JAY-Z Blue” has Jay opening up a bit about the fear of separating from his wife and joint custody. The whole second verse is pretty confessional, about being incapable of being in a functioning relationship. This is after all the man that made “Girls, Girls, Girls” and “Big Pimpin.” It's possible that the seeds have been planted for some time, maybe more people would’ve connected the dots if Magna Carta wasn’t audio Raisin Bran.
JAY-Z and Beyoncé are hip-hop’s Huxtables. Especially after Nas and Kelis, Future and Ciara, Amber Rose and Wiz Khalifa, the only other happy couple having any love in hip-hop are Papoose and Remy. There's J. Cole and Melissa Heholt, Kendrick and Whitney Alford, but they aren’t in the spotlight, you won’t see them trying to be the next power couple. Knowing how much their marriage has become a “goal,” Jay and Beyoncé could easily use that to their advantage. Creating gossip while giving a glimpse into their imperfect life. Relatable, a rocky marriage seems to be more believable than a happy one in the age of divorces. The mind of a creative businesswoman is very dangerous.
I will always heed the scripture that Jay preached on American Gangster. I suggest you do the same.
“So don't believe everything your earlobe captures; It's mostly backwards Unless it happens to be as accurate as me And everything said in song you happen to see Then, actually, believe half of what you see None of what you hear, even if it's spat by me”