U2 frontman offers praise after hip-hop star becomes first rapper to receive honour
The Brooklyn MC was announced as a 2017 inductee into the illustrious songwriting pantheon back in February, having been nominated for the accolade back in November. Jay Z has now officially been entered into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, joining the likes of John Lennon, Elton John and Ira Gershwin – among many others. Inductees are nominated by their peers in the music industry, with the Hall of Fame seeking to “preserve, honour and celebrate the legacy of the great songwriters whose work has enriched the world’s culture.”
Responding to the news via Tidal, the U2 frontman said: “Archangel of hip. Jay Z’s lyrics and music touch every emotion: rage, love, sadness, joy and tragedy. Jay Z started taking notes on his life early on, he reported what he saw and what he felt and he took us with him. Most of us first heard him when we heard ‘Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)’ perfectly juxtaposing the beauty of childhood and the reality he lived in. He got us listening, and we’ve been listening ever since. A true artist that follows Miles Davis’ definition of a true artist, ‘’It’s not about standing still and becoming safe. If anybody wants to keep creating they have to be about change.'”
Other artists speaking out in praise of the rapper include Andre 3000, Nicki Minaj and Quincy Jones. Jon Bon Jovi wrote: “JAY Z IS BEING INDUCTED INTO THE SONGWRITERS HALL OF FAME? WHAT TOOK SO FUCKING LONG?”
Jay Z was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame along with the likes of Swedish songwriter and producer Max Martin, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, Motown founder Berry Gordy, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and three members of the band Chicago.
If true, it would end a four-year wait for a new record from the rapper.