Jay Z

Jay Z (né Shawn Corey Carter) is an American rapper, songwriter, entrepreneur, and media proprietor. In 1996, Jay-Z co-founded Roc-a-Fella Records and released his debut album, Reasonable Doubt. His 1998 album Vol. 2 ... Hard Knock Life earned Jay Z his first Grammy win for Best Rap Album. By 2021, Jay-Z had become the most Grammy-nominated artist with 83 nods and 24 wins. Some of his most successful hits include "Big Pimpin'," "Izzo (H.O.V.A.)," "Holy Grail," "Run This Town," "Dirt Off Your Shoulder" and "03 Bonnie & Clyde."

Jay Z served as the President/CEO of Def Jam Records from 2004 until 2007. He signed a $150 million contract in 2008 with Live Nation to create the entertainment agency Roc Nation. Five years later Roc Nation Sports was launched by the rapper as a full-service sports management company. In August 2019, Roc Nation formed a partnership with the National Football League making Jay Z an advisor for its entertainment events, including the Super Bowl halftime show. He has also worked with the league to create its Inspire Change social activism initiative.

In 2017, Jay Z became the first rapper to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and in 2021 was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Jay Z was named the first billionaire rap artist by Forbes in 2019. He is also well-known for his marriage to Beyoncé.
Jay Z
Full Name
Shawn Corey Carter
New York City


Where is Jay Z from?

Jay Z is from Brooklynn, New York. He grew up in the Marcy Projects.

Why is Jay Z called HOV?

In 2000, Jay Z explained to MTV that his friends gave him the nickname Jay-Hova for his song-making abilities. Jay-Hova stems from "Jehovah" which is the name for God in Hebrew. Jay Z added that he "didn't want to offend too many people," so he shortened the name to HOV.

When did Jay Z and Beyoncé start dating?

Jay Z told Vanity Fair in 2013 that in 2001 he and Beyoncé were "just beginning to try to date each other" and that he was still trying to "wine and dine" her. Beyoncé separately confirmed in a 2008 interview with Seventeen that they began dating when she was 19.

When did Kanye West start producing for Jay Z?

Kanye West produced the track "This Can't Be Life" for Jay Z in 2000 which was featured on the album 'Dynasty: Roc La Familia'. Kanye also produced four songs on 'The Blueprint' which came out the following year.

Most Recent

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Superstar musicians including JAY-Z, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Fat Joe, and more came out to celebrate the We the Best Music Group founder on Monday
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Rihanna is worth $1.7 billion thanks to her Fenty Beauty cosmetics line, making her the wealthiest female musician
Tina Knowles-Lawson Celebrates Beyoncé and JAY-Z's 14th Wedding Anniversary: 'My Inspirations'
Tina Knowles-Lawson wrote that her daughter and son-in-law "work hard, laugh hard and love harder"
Beyoncé Changes Into Dramatic Yellow Gown with Tennis Ball Purse After Performing at 2022 Oscars
Beyoncé opened the 2022 Academy Awards with her song “Be Alive” from King Richard, performed from Serena and Venus Williams’ hometown tennis courts in Compton 
Every Time Beyoncé Graced the Oscars with Her Presence
From show-stealing performances to hitting the red carpet and afterparties with JAY-Z, here's every time the music icon has attended the Academy Awards 
Choreographer Loic Mabanza Says Dancing with JAY-Z, Mariah Carey and Madonna Inspire His Work
"We have the same mindset," the dancer-choreographer tells PEOPLE of working with his A-list musician clientele while he partners with Equinox's LIFE IS THE LUXURY campaign

More Jay Z

JAY-Z and Blue Ivy Have a Father-Daughter Day at Super Bowl LVI — See the Photos
The NFL shared a video of JAY-Z snapping photos of daughter Blue Ivy and a friend on the field ahead of Super Bowl LVI on Sunday
Tina Knowles-Lawson Reveals How She Defended JAY-Z After a Woman Called Him a 'Gangster Rapper'
Beyoncé’s mom tells PEOPLE about the incident, which she recalls in her powerful new Discovery+ docuseries, Profiled: The Black Man
JAY-Z Says 'No One' Can Compete Against Him After Rick Ross Suggests Verzuz Battle: 'Not a Chance in Hell'

The iconic rapper's response came after Rick Ross said there was "a possibility" of the two competing against each other