Jay-Z recently covered GQ magazine’s “Men of the Year” issue, allowing the publication to tag along during his travels in New York City, New York. During the interview, Hov touched on the concept behind his and Kanye West’s single “Niggas in Paris,” stating that it’s not about flaunting wealth but more about reflecting on how they got it.
“It’s not, like, ‘We’re here! We’re balling harder than everybody,'” he says. “It’s like, ‘I’m shocked that we’re here.’ Still being amazed, still not being jaded. Having so much fun and then stopping and saying, ‘What are we doing here? How did we get here?'”
He touches on the particular line, “If you escaped what I escaped, you’d be in Paris getting fucked up too,” explaining that it represents the struggle that he had to overcome in order to find success.
“I’ve known so many people that didn’t make it,” he says. “Most people can look at a picture of the kids they grew up with and it’s like, ‘Oh yeah—Adam went away to Harvard.’ This is a whole different conversation.”
The father-to-be also said that Beyonce was the one who decided to reveal her pregnancy at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards, and opened up about his own father. “If your dad died before you were born, yeah, it hurts—but it’s not like you had a connection with something that was real,” Jay says. “Not to say it’s any better—but to have that connection and then have it ripped away was, like, the worst. My dad was such a good dad that when he left, he left a huge scar. He was my superhero.”