Jay-Z seldom speaks publicly about other artists, but when he does, everyone in Hip-Hop pays attention. After becoming the first rapper to be elected into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2017, the 4:44 artist celebrated everyone from Drake and Kanye West to Mac Miller and Tee Grizzley. During a Twitter Spaces debate, Jay-Z and Alicia Keys express their thoughts on Frank Ocean’s work.
During Vic Mensa’s debut album listening party, Hov labelled his Roc Nation signee a “once in a lifetime artist.” Several years later, Jay-Z has taken the time to honour another artist, this time a singer: Frank Ocean.
Frank Ocean is one of Jay-Z’s close collaborators and one of this generation’s most popular singers. Jay-Z brought up Frank Ocean during a recent Twitter Spaces conversation with Alicia Keys, Genius, and Rob Markman. For about a minute, he praised the Blonde singer’s brilliance and ability to flourish in the music industry on his own terms.
“You know, the success has to be, you know, like Frank Ocean. Now obviously, you know he’s super popular, but I wouldn’t say that he’s playing by what was what would what were the industry rules. He’s [playing] by his own set of rules, and he makes music that he wants to make. And it doesn’t fit a format.”
Hov continued that Ocean doesn’t have songs that match pop radio or that make it a billion streams. He just has music that’s better than everyone else. And it has to be the end aim.
Alicia Keys then jumped on the Z-bandwagon, stating that Ocean exists in his own universe, and he makes what he enjoys. One can easily tell that he isn’t playing by anybody else’s set of rules.
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