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The best moment of the Grammys was the surprise speech by Jay-Z

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Anyone know? Jay-ZDid anyone receive a special award tonight at the Grammys? My timeline was flooded with reactions as soon as Trevor Noah mentioned it. It seemed like people were confused that the Greatest Rapper of All Time would be honored at the ceremony. This is the kind of event that should have been hyped up in the days and weeks before the broadcast. It was a nice surprise and ended up being one of the most electrifying moments of the night.

Jay took the stage to accept the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award—first given out last year to, you guessed it, Dr. Dre— alongside his eldest daughter Blue Ivy, a callback to the time 10 years ago when he The first Grammy he has won since her birth, he announced that a “sippy cup” for her. (Now, ofcourse, Blue Carter has won some Grammys for the Carter family). We should’ve known how real Jay was going to keep it when the walk-up music was his grimy classic “Where I’m From” (as in, “Marcy, son”Instead, choose something more audience-friendly and tame like “Empire State of Mind”You can also find out more about “Holy Grail.” And from there Jay kept it as real as he did back in 1997—or rather ‘99, when he achieved peak mainstream success and still vowed that he’Never “take the durag off.”

In a three-minute speech, Jay wasted no time talking about the Grammys’ complicated relationship with hip-hop and his own family, referencing Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff’s boycottBack to 1989 and then His own, which followed the late great DMX’s snub in 1998. It was especially powerful on a night where none of the major categories for rap (which included Killer MikeOn the main broadcast, they were shown going three for three.

Jay-Z was the one who told the Grammys what to do, despite being the Grammy’s most awarded rapper (tied with Kanye but it’s unclear whether this achievement award places him ahead). “fuck off”Just a few short years ago, his acclaimed 4:44It is a good idea to use the following: went zero for eight. But it’s deeper than rap, of course—Jay is married to the woman with at least three of the most egregious Album of the Year snubs of recent years, despite having the most wins of any artist, a fact about which he essentially asked the Grammys, Make sense.

Jay’s plea to the Recording Academy (“We want you to get it right”) was a perfect encapsulation of Black culture’s frustrating push and pull with this institution, and his broadly shady comments that some artists will be robbed—and some shouldn’t even be in the category—was deliciously spicy. It was a more genuine and levelheaded version of Drake’s sentiment. Instagram – expressed on his InstagramHe was nominated for a few rap awards, but lost them all.

Jay is not very good at public speaking. This was addressed by him (expect). “I tell the truth when I get nervous” to enter the social-media caption pantheon) but he delivered, spitting off the top as he’s always done with his verses. His long-but-not-rambling speech was wryly funny at times and hilariously blunt at others (“Y’all dont gotta clap at everything”), and it ended with a reminder of one of Jay’s best qualities: his ability to self-mythologize and relate at the same time. “Keep showing up,” he said, “until they give you the accolades you feel you deserve. Until they call you chairman, a genius, until they call you the greatest of all time. Feel me?”

Now where’s that new album?

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