Jay-Z was recently reminded in an interview with MTV News that Vol. 2 … Hard Knock Life turned 14 years old on Saturday (September 29), causing the Hip Hop superstar to reflect on what made the album such a hit.

“It was just so pure,” said Jay, who explained that during the recording of the album was the time when he met a then-teenage Swizz Beatz. 

“I wanted Dame Grease, ’cause he was workin’ on the DMX album [It’s Dark And Hell Is Hot]. I was like, ‘Where’s the guy that’s making all of those songs?'”

Darrin “Dee” Dean, Co-CEO of DMX’s label, suggested that Hov work with Swizz instead, but Jay was skeptical. “I’m like, ‘Nah don’t try and play me with the nephew.'”

It turned out that the meeting was a fortuitous one. “He came in, he played those songs. We went from my office to the studio, we made four records … From there, the body of the album was in place.”

Watch the interview below:

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