Has 4:44 given everyone the motivation to get back out there with the pen? I can’t say for sure. My friend told me she wasn’t giving any “free quotes” and that her opinion would be on her blog and that mine should be on mine as well. So… here I am.

Before getting into my “review”, I want to advise I have only listened to the album in its entirety twice. I have listened to tracks 1-7 about 4 or 5 times. I have done a lot of my listening in route to somewhere and by the time I arrive I gotten to track 6 or so. I do what I need to do. Then get back in the car and ultimately start over. I have also only listened to the album in one sitting, once. With few exceptions, listening to this was the only thing I did today. And still I know I didn’t get everything. Having the lyrics to all of the songs would make everything easier but I just haven’t broke down to read them yet. I want to feel 4:44 first.

I, a Proud Tidal Subscriber, was not a part of the anxiously awaiting 4:44 crew. I was definitely a part of the “I will get to it when I get to it” crew. And when did I “get to it”? Around 10am EST. In the urgent care room with my husband, don’t worry he’s fine, nodding along to the greatness. And when something was particularly nice, I would make this sound that my husband described as the sound someone would make when “alcohol is be poured on a cut.”

After seeing lots of people talk about “The Story of OJ” my husband tells me he’s going to listen to the song. “No, listen to it in the way it’s presented. Top to Bottom. It’s the second track on the album,” I say. In a dragging his feet kind of way, he says “okay.” After Lemonade, its been really important for me to listen to an album first from top to bottom. Then when A Seat at the Table came out it reinforced why it is important to listen to an album top to bottom for the first listen. I assume if you are with me here you have heard 4:44 but if not listen to it in speakers not a headset. I literally missed things in my headset that I caught in the speakers of the car. And do not proceed because spoilers. Is there a such thing as music spoilers? I digress.

I enjoyed the album in its entirety. Period. Point Blank. It’s a very mature piece of work. It’s made for a mature mind. Also it was made to plant a seed for the future. Jay-Z has officially turned into Uncle Jay, Unc if you will, with 4:44. He’s giving you advice that if you heed it today, your life will be easier tomorrow. He’s telling you about mistakes that he’s made so you don’t have to make them. If you were looking for a club banger this isn’t your album. And that’s okay. Uncle Jay is almost 50 years old and a lot of people aren’t going to the club at that age, unless they are getting paid. This a grown folks album. For those of us with responsibilities. Its perfect.

I have one major question. WHEN DID HE WRITE THIS?  There is the Moonlight/ LaLa Land reference. Al Sharpton and Bill Cosby references, that was literally last week! When did you write this Uncle Jay?

Uncle Jay is a lyricist, we know this. But come on! Unc, you out did yourself with this one. Just jewels on jewels on jewels.

Favorite songs-

3. The Story of OJ – This is one of the times I thought when did he write this. It seemed topical. My first thoughts, “Is the hook a reference to the Bill Maher controversy?” Black people nowadays don’t make many references to house and field niggas outside of slavery, so it definitely felt like it was. The financial wisdom that he drops. He passed on the opportunity to get property for $2 mil and now that spot is worth $20mil! “Dumbo.” Knowing what to do with what you have and when. He explains the value of Art and Tidal. This is the wisdom.

2. 4:4 – An apology for being ain’t shit???? Not just to his wife but to women he’s hurt in general! Also specifically to his wife! I loved it! Loved it!

1. Family Feud- “And old niggas y’all stop actin’ brand new/ Like 2 Pac didn’t have a nose ring too.” I guess because since he’s been on the internets talking about such things, the first person I thought of was Joe Budden. While I do not know any Lil’ Yachty songs, I actually had to google how to spell his name correctly, I do know that he’s just out here trying to put out music. Like it or not. Uncle Jay saying leave them alone is what’s needed. If he’s the GOAT in so many eyes and he’s saying back down. Back down! Don’t Go Joe Budden. “A man that don’t take care of his family can’t be rich.” Church! “Al Sharpton in the mirror taking selfies/ How is him or Bill Cosby supposed to help me?” Those guys are old think. The times have changed and they don’t get it. Our help can’t come from people like them anymore. They did what they did. Now we do what we do. “We all lose when the family feuds” “I be damned if I drink some Belvedere while Puff got Ciroc.” I was making my sound ALL through this song! I love it! Then Uncle Jay is promoting another Black Business on his album!

Honorable mention- Legacy. Period. Uncle Jay reinforcing why generational wealth is necessary.

Samples. Where all of the songs samples? When something works, you work it. Uncle Jay has worked with many producers who have sampled songs but I felt like the samples this time around were more intentional than by happenstance. Example, “Izzo” off of The Blueprint uses a sample of Jackson Five’s “I want you back” it’s a distant background to the song. But Nina Simone’s “Four Women” was an additional layer to “The Story of OJ.” There was a clear vision and the samples proved that. Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, The Clark Sisters, The Fugees, and MORE.

Because its 2017, the internet streets are always talking and buzzing. I came across some interesting takes and ideas. One friend asked, “Did [Uncle Jay] take the Grammy from Kendrick?” This same friend said ” 4:44= Lemonade for Men.” While I’m not a man, I disagree a little. Lemonade was about love; of, for, and from your Significant other, your father,  and for you people. 4:44 is a life guide.

Charlamagne the God tweeted, “The reason you don’t have Jay-Z new album is because you don’t support Black Businesses.” I have been a Tidal Subscriber for over a year now. I enjoy the playlist they put together and a lot what I listen to is there. I never thought about it as supporting a Black Business. I did think of it as supporting artists though. Things that make you go hmmm.

I appreciate this album. It is substantive. It was cohesive. And clearly very well thought out. Which is literally not saying anything given who we’re talking about.

-Imagoodgrl

So you may or, most likely, may not have noticed it’s been sometime since my last posting. And honestly I have been busy-ish but I have also been lazy-ish… Well more lazy than ish when it comes to this. But I have made a safe return. With the thoughts that have brought me here today.

So yea this is a part 3. Same purpose. Same theme. Same goal. 

Months ago I was searching for what would ultimately make me happy. And now months later I am not too much closer than I was back then. I know a little bit more than I did, as it pertains to life. Things are different. But I still do not know what will make me happy or what I am supposed to be doing with my life.

I have however started putting some of my plans into action. That, I do have to say, feels really good. From time to time, I see a guy that I was in training with at my job and he always mentions where I said I wanted to be years ago. It goes as follows, ” Oh you’re still here. I remember when you said you were going to be gone in a year. How long has it been now?” And when I run into him I get annoyed that he brings it up EVERY time I see him. But the bible says in Ecclesiastes 3:1:

 To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:

What does that mean? I am exactly where I am supposed to be. And that feels good.

I wanted to write this blog a few days ago when a friend of my got really good news. When I met her years ago I told her (Shanette) that she reminded me of another friend of mine (Shaie). Why? Because these women are two the most focused women I know. When they put their minds to something they do it. And neither of them having a perfect life but whatever life throws their way they continue to be goal minded. It is a pleasure to see. And both of them have personalities do not disappoint. So as I move forward with this journey that I am on, I take the wisdom and knowledge from those around me. I thank God for the ability to be close enough to see your greatness.

So Congratulations to Shanette on the new journey that you are embarking on.  I’m going to come down to Atlanta to visit. And shout to Shaie for being the person you have always been. Love you both!

Refreshingly taking in Hillsong’s Lead Me to the Cross and Fred Hammond’s Awesome God while in the fog.

So today I had a conversation with one of my out-of-state best friends. We were talking about what I consider typical things that young women of our age talk about. The Future. I was telling her that I plan to move across the country within the next few months and the other life changes to come. While discussing that. I was telling her that I am unsure what I really want to go to school for. Lately I have been recreationally in school. What does that mean? I have taken classes but without any real goal. I started with one but now I am just not so sure.

As I was telling her about my lack of direction she asked me a question, “Do you remember how I figured [it] out?” I respond, “No I don’t remember.” She tells me, ” if you didn’t have to worry about money…..what would you [do] for free?”  The funny thing was my sister and I were talking about that very thing the day before. I jokingly told both my sister and my friend “i would be kim kardashian… u kno without the sextape and whore tendencies.”

But at that moment the light bulb just went off… I need to figure out what I would do for free that would make me happy. Make me feel like I was doing something with my life. Make me feel good after putting in a long days work. I then told my friend ” i guess i need to just sit down and write things down, pray … see what i come up with”

The bible says in Jeremiah 29:11 :

For I know the plans that I have for you’ says the Lord. ‘Plans to prosper you not to harm you. Plans to give hope and a future.

I need to find not only my plans for me but God’s plans for me. So I have committed to finding what is going to be for me. Its crazy, she’s not the first person to ever say this but today was the day I was really ready to hear it. So this is another journey to add to the forward movement of my life.

So shout out to Shaie Michele for being on time.

Enthusiastically taking in Our God by Chris Tomlin while wearing High Maintenance.

Firstly, I would like to thank you for following me here to my joint blogging home. Secondly, I would like to restate that I don’t really know what is urging me to write about this topic but here I am. Thirdly, I am not scouting out a husband. I am not running towards the isle. This is just what is in my heart right now. So the other day I was thinking about all of the qualities that I want in my future husband and I came across a myspace blog posting of my bestie where she bares her 62-point minimum requirement. I elected a different approach at the same. I decided to create a list of promises that I could make to the man I would one day call my husband. I figure this was the best way to approach my list, by committing to promises that I can live up to and in turn expect of him as well. I want my husband to know that he can commit to these promises and have a list of his own.

So I find myself dreaming of the man that I will one day call my husband. I think about how our children will love us. And how our hard days will end with his head in my lap while I’m slowly rubbing his head. I think about how our children ask how we met and we look at each other knowing that God couldn’t have orchestrated our meeting better if he had tried. Going to sleep every night thinking about how I was blessed with the best man alive. And even when the bad days comes know that there isn’t anything that we can not face together with God.

Truthfully, I never saw myself as a “dater”. I always knew that by design I would be the settled type. At times this has been a downfall. I did think that I saw my husband in him. I came to realization that I didn’t so I couldn’t live that life any longer. I know when God shows me to my husband, he will be able to make more commitments to me that I could think of and I to him. So I’m not going to say that I am ready. I have so much growing to do in so many different ways, but I know that I can’t wait until God sees fit to add to my life in that way. I don’t plan to rush the process nor explore it on my own. I will wait patiently wait.

Thank you once again for reading my mind tonight. Here’s something that I found and instantly fell in love with Floetry Fantasize. Comments can be posted on both the facebook note or the myspace blog.

I’m soulfully drinking in Destiny’s Child’s Cater to you and Chrisette Michele’s Golden with Lovely Lavendar  with Shocking Pink dots.