On a rainy Sunday in Los Angeles, Jay-Z accepted the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award during the 66th Annual Grammy Awards.
With his oldest daughter, Blue Ivy Carter by his side, Hov joked that he had won another “sippy cup” for the 12-year-old. The comment was a callback to his joke from 2014, but noted a decade later the tween doesn’t need a sippy cup and she has a Grammy of her own.
During his speech at the star-studded ceremony at Crypto.Com Arena, he thanked Dr. Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, for all the doors he’s opened for other hip-hop artists and producers.
“(You) showed us we could be rockstars on the cover of ‘Rolling Stone,'” he explained. He then also honored Run-D.M.C. for breaking barriers for their collaboration with Aerosmith in the mid-80s.
He credited Dre for taking hip-hop to a “whole new level” and for “putting us on covers” and “putting us around the world.”
He also thanked the Black Music Collective.
“How far we’ve come,” he said before he slowly began to criticize the academy.
Jay then talked about the Grammys’ not-so-glamorous past with hip-hop/rap music. He then went into the 1989 tale of when Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff boycotted the awards ceremony when they learned the category for Best Rap Performance wouldn’t be televised.
The Brooklyn native then explained how he was inspired by their actions when he boycotted the ceremony in 1998 when the academy did not acknowledge rapper DMX’s contribution to music seeing as he dropped two albums in one year.
“I’m just saying, we want ya’ll to get it right,” he reasoned. “We love ya’ll, we love ya’ll, we love ya’ll (but) we want ya’ll to get it right. At least get it close to right. Obviously, it’s subjective because it’s music. It’s opinion-based.”
Then he called out the academy on behalf of his better half, Beyoncé. Despite winning a record-setting 32 Grammys, amid 88 nominations, she has never taken home Album of the Year.
“I don’t want to embarrass this young lady, but she has more Grammys than everyone and never won Album of the Year,” Jay-Z said. “So even by your own metrics, that doesn’t work. Think about that. The most Grammys; never won Album of the Year. That doesn’t work.”
As Jay called out the organization, Beyoncé stood in the crowd listening to his speech.
The “Cuff It” singer has been nominated for Album of the Year six times.
In 2017, she lost out to Adele who famously admitted it was Queen Bey who should’ve taken home the award for “Lemonade.”
“Some of you gonna go home and feel like you’ve been robbed,” Jay continued to tell the crowd. “Some of you may get robbed. Some of you don’t belong in the category.”
After an audible shock from the audience was heard, he admitted and chuckled, “No, when I get nervous I tell the truth.”
“But outside of that, we got to keep showing up. Forget the Grammys for a second, just in life. As my daughter sits and stares at me nervous just as I am,” he continued. “Keep showing up until they give you all those accolades you feel you deserve. Until they call you Chairman. Until they call you a genius. Until they call you the greatest of all time.”
“Feel me?” he asked the crowd to cheers. “Thank you.”
Jay has won 24 Grammys amid 88 nominations. He won his first award for Best Rap Album for “Vol. 2 … Hard Knock Life” in 1998. He holds the distinction of rapper with the most Grammy wins in history.
KTLA 5 has reached out to the Grammys for a response to Jay’s comments and are awaiting a response.
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