jay-z Archives - Page 2 of 3 - The Jose Vilson

jay-z

I Went Through Hell, So I’m Expecting Heaven [On Speaking Up Again]

May 6, 2012 Jose
jay-z-and-kanye-westbw

Colleague Carrie Kamm commented on my last post with this: “Something prompted this blog post from you. I am sure these thoughts and ideas have dwelled within you, but I’d love to know what you observed, heard, or felt that made you need to write this post this week. For me, reading Lisa Delpit’s latest […]

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Such Dummies, or Why I Didn’t Have To Decode Jay-Z Like Y’all Did

November 6, 2011 Jose
Jay-Z's "Decoded"

I finally got around to reading Jay-Z’s Decoded after reading Kevin Nealon’s voyage towards fatherhood in Yes, You’re Pregnant, But What About Me? Rather than examining the contrasts of my literary interests, I prefer we discuss the last month of controversy I may or may not have sparked on the Interwebs with certain pieces I’ve […]

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Educate So Hard, Michael Bloomberg Wanna Fine Me [Education Week]

September 28, 2011 Guest Posts

Excerpt: As in any other subculture, rap aficionados argue about which rapper has produced the most impressive output. Jay-Z has cited Nas, The Notorious B.I.G., and 2Pac as “greats”—and his career is often compared with theirs. The Notorious B.I.G. and 2Pac met untimely deaths in 1997, so comparisons are limited. But Nas’ “Illmatic” is considered […]

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Rock Wilk: It’s Like His Heart Broke Wide Open

September 27, 2010 Jose
Rock Wilk

Let me start off by saying that, with many in the poetry community, I’ve gotten a reputation for my honesty and borderline snobbery when it comes to writing. I don’t intend it that way; I just have a certain quality of writing I ask for. Whether it’s morose or uproarious, I ask for few things, […]

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The Illuminated Series: Where Jay-Z Makes His Former Teacher Eat His Words

September 7, 2010 Jose
Jay-Z, American Gangster

Hip-hop as a culture and a music genre has always had a dichotomous relationship with this word “teacher.” On the one end, many of the later generation of rappers were high school and college drop-outs, including 50 Cent, Notorious BIG, and Kanye West. Yet, rappers like Gangstarr’s Guru and Public Enemy’s Chuck D both graduated […]

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Heartless

December 15, 2008 Jose
Heartbreak

Kanye West recently got me to thinking about the callous facade men and women take on when not satisfied with matters of the heart. Along the lines of Jay-Z’s “They say you can’t turn a bad girl good, but once a good girl’s gone bad, she’s gone forever,” Kanye’s song “Heartless” is an honest musing […]

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Jail’s a Revolving Door; The Casket’s Not

June 15, 2008 Jose
2pacpray

There I go, quoting another rapper again. I consider myself a rap fan by most standards, but today especially, I recognize the power of their words. When Jay-Z speaks of the “genesis of a nemesis” when telling of the birth of a drug dealer, when 2Pac speaks of hopelessness throughout most of his records, and […]

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