Jay-Z – Interview and Freestyle (1996)
Tuesday May 10th 2005,
Filed under: Freestyles,Radio Interviews,Tape Vaults
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Continuing the throw-back interviews from my tape vaults, today’s session features an excited Jay-Z as he chops it up with Westwood, shortly before the release of Reasonable Doubt. A lotta memories on this one – remember when Hov was talking about “this is gonna be my only album”? Speaking of broken promises, right after Ice Cube dropped Amerikkka’s Most Wanted, he was quoted as saying he was only doing one more album before he called it quits, since “motherfuckers get sick of you if you’re in their face too much”. If only the “Bitch Killa” had heeded his own advice and stopped rapping after Death Certificate, he could have stepped off at the top of the game….

But back to Jay, during this interview it’s clear that he’s enjoying the initial success of “Ain’t No Nigga” as it began tearing up the clubs, and he’s brimming with confidence when discussing his soon-to-be classic debut. He also touches on speaks about his early days rolling with The Jaz, and introduces a little label by the name of Rocafella Records before he drops a couple of verses over Funkmaster Flex rocking doubles of Sadat X‘s “Stages and Lights” beat.

Jay-Z Radio Interview & Freestyle (Tim Westwood’s Radio 1 Rap Show, 1996).

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37 Comments so far
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Or Ian Thorpe (no homo)

Comment by headlock 05.12.05 @

love the site, keep doing ur thing

Comment by mega montana 05.10.05 @

no homo

> used to be the jaz’ rap partner

you mean “weed carrier”?

> has now joined forces w/bdk

you mean “is now carrying weed for”?

> He also touches

no homo

> on his early days rolling with The Jaz

you mean “is now carrying weed for”?

Comment by djxplicit 05.10.05 @

Thanks for pointing those out. I can’t believe I missed the last two…

Comment by Robbie 05.10.05 @

Freestyle? Don’t you mean to say he kicks some verses from the album? Ain’t no freestyle on that snippet

Comment by yo 05.11.05 @

Yeah obviously it’s not some “off the top of the head” shit, but a “freestyle” can be written verses over a beat as well. Just ask Lord Finesse.

Comment by Robbie 05.11.05 @

Wow, dude even had a better flow in his regular speech pattern. He sounds like an effin brain dead sack of pennies these days. I wonder what the fuck happened to dude. Reminds me of Ali and his current condition. Did someone continuously beat Jay’s ass on the regular (no homo).

Comment by Combat Jack 05.16.05 @

“Did someone continuously beat Jay’s ass on the regular”

That’s what Dame got paid for

Comment by Robbie 05.16.05 @

sick interview… Wish he would reach back and give BDK some support though.

Comment by 33third.com 05.19.05 @

Wish he would help BDK??!! Jaz, Sauce, Foxy, now Dame all dumped by the Jiggameister!

Comment by chronwell 05.25.05 @

What is Jay suppose to do, hold everybody hands that hung out with him back in day. Damn,let that man be, shi@. Jay, Dame and Biggs all grew apart from one another so rightfully it was time for them to move on. So if Dame is sore about it that’s his problem get over it. Using folks to build your wealth is not cool. An why the heck are folks so mad at Jay,for what, jealous. Jay, did his share, now it’s time for those other two to start up there engines and move on and stop hating on Jay.
There is an old saying, you shouldn’t let problems tap dance in your head. You will never prosper in life if it bothers you.

Comment by tony 05.31.05 @

dope interview and freestyle.

Comment by Fone bne 06.12.05 @

That interview was indeed a classic and Young Hov at his finest!!

Comment by J.Bizzle 08.11.05 @

Have ya’ll heard about that new kid ESHY? Just a lil Hit and Black And Jews with CHuck D?

Comment by lilred 08.29.05 @

Why is he spittin’ a verse when he asked him to freesytle?

Comment by Nashvillain 08.30.05 @

PLEASE, enough of the no homo crap. Seriously take a few moments and think of an original way to say something. It hasn’t been funny since Cam’ron first used the saying a year ago. ENOUGH, the horse is dead … stop beating it.
P.S. – Nice site

Comment by Bing ONE Five OHH 08.30.05 @

who doesnt realize a freestyle is just a loose

rap yet. dont nobody want to hear just any old

bullshit someone comes off of the head w/. we

want to be entertained by thought provoking

lyrics or @ least humorous one liners &

punchlines thats why rappers kick writtens. its

common sence. fuck an off the top rap! a

freestyle is just a raw verse on a random beat.

Comment by bon-hed live in bk 09.01.05 @

stop hattin’ mu!#afu@*, it was a classic interview and a classic freestyle no matter what so shut that bullish up until you can come up wit’ somethin’ better. but i guess that’s what haters do, and yo lame a$$ will continue to sit on this website and come up wit’ somethin’ negative to say anyway though…. damn bon-hed!

Comment by the 1 09.04.05 @

Yup, like Ive been tellin the masses, Jigga was an animal in the nineties. He was too gutter for MTV, and when he realized it, or when he got closer to 40, he smartened up, and cut records for Sally or Becky, u smell me? Imean, I only listen to his pre-Hard Knock Life material…And for the record, the Blueprints and The Black album were mediorce. JIgga-man, BK shit, yall know

Comment by H Cap 09.04.05 @

This boy is wack! Please everyone stop supporting the man who made biting and stealing lines “the thing to do”. Stole Foxy from Nas, took all of Nas’s rhymes and his whole style! He talks; he does not rap! His flow sucks and his delivery is sloppy! Nas murdered him and everyone let it slide because Nas didn’t sell out like him! Suckers of society wake up!

Comment by Mike 09.24.05 @


are you retarted? or just from the south? you said “His flow sucks and his delivery is sloppy” umm you need to stop drinking jeezy juice and realize what real rap is. It sure the hell aint rims, hoes, and crunkness. That sucks. Every rapper will tell you jay is sittin in the throne—still

Comment by rez410 09.25.05 @

Jay was mad bouncy back then but i still liked his flow.it’s like he’s sewing with word…and yea everyone knows that jay has the throne….rappers even say they’re coming for the throne when they’re talking about him….stop hating..the man is on top…still

Comment by Spaced Out 10.03.05 @

fuck all yall haters,anyone in ur family’s worth $350 million dollars,first priority is to leave to leave the hood,and feed families,not be real on yall broke asses. Feel him or not he’s sold 33million copies,a hiphop record,so shut the fuck up,go find a way u’ll make urs either by crook or hook,dont yall feel stupid,u hating on someone who paved way for others,made yall wanna floss,brought the ghetto to fortune magazine,opend madison square for rap,made yall wear platinum,not those spongy shit……


Comment by durrey 10.07.05 @

no ones bettter than jay,he sounded the way he still sounds,and what do yall think a freestyle is,u need to be in the hood,freeestyles dont just come off top……………fools

Comment by skinner 10.07.05 @

dudes made more paper than yalls familyy advances and benefits,so shut the fuck up

Comment by ray 10.07.05 @

$350mill thats enough money to give the whole of new york about $50 thats alot.

Comment by john 10.07.05 @

yall cant see clearly cus the reign aint gone
the dynasty,made by the boy shawn
gang green,nigga its the gangsta team……………roc baby

Comment by baller 10.07.05 @

combat jack go swallow a penny,ur rusty stomach still wont get u enough money to buy an audemars piguet u broke bastard……..jays the realest,and he remains king.niggas who got life like jigga…thats real talk.BK stand up

Comment by joe 10.07.05 @

You fuckin fags gotta stop with that ‘no homo’ shit….and on another note, nice interview, im glad this was posted. keep it poppin

Comment by Insane 10.07.05 @

uh i did move witta 1000 lil dudes
deliver tha winter snow up in tha summer on da lo
choppin my kilos,uppin’ my steelo
ma gon’ earl’ morn roc sellin till da nitefall
-JAY Z “Lexes in Texas”1990

Comment by uh a jayz babe 10.25.05 @

the article is very informative it’s all good !!

Comment by steve 10.25.05 @

A REAL FREESTYLE – is off the top of the head. I don’t knock people who can’t do it and avoid embarrassing themselves by saying something written. However, BON-HED, people who can really come off the top of the head do put one liners and clever rhymes into it. That’s the point. That’s what’s amazing about it. Writing a verse and saying it over a different beat is not hard. What the hell are you talking about? Real heads can tell the difference. I guess Bon-heds can’t.

Comment by Smasher 02.07.06 @

London stand up Westwood from Hackney to Brixton rude boy

Comment by boweski 03.14.06 @

“are you retarted? or just from the south?”

Whoa, them there’s some strong words! Slow down. People in the are neither slow nor retarded.

Comment by Anonymous Southerner 09.27.06 @

Well this certainly seems harsh, I noticed that there are uneducated HipHop heads regarding the legacy of freestyling, as evident in these posts

Comment by Kevin 09.27.06 @

bah! “Nas didn’t sell out like him”… how soon we forget ’97 thru 2000. Some call it selling out, some call it adapting to change: whatever you call it, Jay’s will to succeed got him to where he is. He’s really no different than he was before he started sellin’ records- alot of the so-called “real hip-hop” muhfukkas changed because he started sellin’. Just like they do with ANYONE who crawls out of the underground. If Sadat X had a big record on the radio TOMORROW, alot of his “loyal devotees” would start cryin’.

Comment by DanjaMania 09.27.06 @

a “young” hov for real! you gotta respect how it started even though he wasnt freestyling you gotta love hearing where it came from! to hear classic verses covered as freestyles tells you how much he’s grown with his craft and how excited he was about doing what he was about to which was dropped a classic album whether he knew it or not! as a fan you gotta love the beginning abd respect the now!

Comment by bangs75 12.07.06 @

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