Known professionally as Jay-Z, he was born Shawn Corey Carter on December 4, 1969, in New York City. He is an American rapper and businessman, and his main genre is hip-hop.
As a rapper, he started his career in 1986 but that was not his real beginning. His real beginning was on a boom box bought for him by his mother, and soon after that, he started writing lyrics along freestyling. He worked on his own for quite a while to the extent that he sold CDs out of his car since he had no label that could land him a record deal. It was in 1995 that he struck a deal with Priority and after that, he released his first album "Reasonable Doubt".
That was just the beginning and since then Jay-Z has released an album almost every year, be it a solo album or a collaboration album. Today he is one of the best-selling musicians of all time with a Forbes estimate of his net worth being $900 million dollars.
His music has been awarded numerous times; he has been awarded the Grammy 21 times and holds the record for most number one albums by a solo artist on the US Billboard 200. He has also had four number ones on the Billboard Hot 100, one "Empire State of Mind" as a lead artist. In 2009, he was ranked the tenth-most successful artist of the 2000s by Billboard. He has also been ranked the 88th-greatest artist of all time by Rolling Stone.
Even though he is a solo artist, but he has associated acts with a lot of artists or bands. Some of these are; Foxy Brown, Beyoncé, DJ Khaled, Frank Ocean, J. Cole, Jaz-O, Jeezy, Justin Timberlake, Kanye West, Linkin Park, Memphis Bleek, The Notorious B.I.G, R. Kelly, Rihanna, Too Short, and more still. This has not only increased his popularity among fans but also among his fellow artists.
Of course, he is a rapper primarily, but he has also made the business a large part of his life. He has delved into a large variety of industries such as clothing lines, beverages, real estate, sports teams, and record labels. But that is not all, he has branched into many industries and beauty products while at the same time he co-owns a lot of businesses as well as record labels, clubs, and NBA team Brooklyn Nets; to mention just a few. He is also into investments, tv and film productions. The list is endless, and so is his ability and energy for business as well as music.
For a rapper who started on his own and made his own unique style in rapping – be it slow or fast - and created his own influences and rapping techniques; he has come a long way and deserves all the ears that we give his music.
Jay-Z has the what it takes to be a rapper and businessman and somehow excel in both fields with a prowess that we can only admire and learn from as we listen to his great songs.