Download Album: Jay Z The Black Album Zip File
Jay-Z almost retired at the top of his game. In November 2003, he played what was to be his final show at Madison Square Garden, a kind of hip-hop Last Waltz featuring appearances from multiple generations of rap royalty, from Slick Rick to Missy Elliott, and a well-received concert film to boot. A week and a half before, he’d released The Black Album, an assured and diverse project that found him acknowledging his place at the top of the mountain without resting on his laurels quite yet. “I don’t wear jerseys, I’m 30-plus,” he rapped on the triumphant “What More Can I Say?,” an oddly charming boast that nonetheless gave a glimpse of the stagnant dad-rap into which he would fully delve on his ill-fated comeback Kingdom Come. But a few songs later, on the pensive Eminem-produced “Moment of Clarity,” he admitted that he still wasn’t satisfied with what he’d accomplished, shouting out his comparatively lesser-known peers Common and Talib Kweli as the artists who inspired him to work harder.
The Black Album has just about everything you could possibly want in a Jay-Z record: a world-conquering hit and a newly minted catchphrase in “Dirt Off Your Shoulder,” some sly political commentary and a boombox-obliterating beat in “99 Problems,” grizzled nostalgia on “My First Song” and “December 4th,” the presence of Kanye West on “Lucifer,” plus spectacular shit-talk and some of the greatest opening bars in history on “P.S.A.” Despite its title, The Black Album is a technicolor collection of music, and with the sole exception of the limp single “Change Clothes,” the force of Jay-Z’s enormous personality holds it all together. It was the high note he should have gone out on.
The Black Album Songs
What More Can I Say
Dirt Off Your Shoulder
Moment of Clarity
Public Service Announcement (interlude)
Justify My Thug
My 1st Song