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Jay Z

July 17, 2013 | By Mikael Wood
After a busy stretch of promotional activity including a video shoot in an art gallery, a performance at London's Wireless Festival and a Q&A with fans on Twitter, Jay-Z debuted at No. 1 this week on the Billboard 200 with "Magna Carta Holy Grail," his 12th solo studio album. The New York rapper sold 527,000 copies of the album, according to Nielsen SoundScan, making its debut the year's second-biggest opening after Justin Timberlake's "The 20/20 Experience," which moved almost 1 million copies in its first week in stores in March.
July 15, 2013 | By August Brown
Last week, producer Hudson Mohawke - a centerpiece of Kanye West's extended crew and a producer on "Yeezus" - said something that almost no other producer peer was willing to. He thought the new Jay-Z album didn't sound all that exciting.  "This record could've came out 10 yrs ago n no one wouldve batted an eye lid," he wrote on Twitter . In a followup reply to the producer Mike Dean, he added: "Not negativity just honest opinion I think it's...
July 15, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder, This post has been updated, as indicated below
Now he's got 100 problems. Rapper Jay-Z was widely praised for his business savvy after he announced a plan to give away 1 million copies of his new album to Samsung Galaxy smartphone users through a special app. But that app has generated a slew of complaints from users, and even a fellow rapper , worried about data it collects. Now the Electronic Privacy Information Center, or EPIC, an advocacy group, is asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate. PHOTOS: Celebrities by The Times “ Samsung  failed to disclose material information about the privacy practices of the App, collected data unnecessary to the functioning of the  Magna   Carta  App, deprived users of meaningful choice regarding the collection of their data, interfered with device functionality, and failed to implement reasonable data minimization procedures,” the group said in the complaint.
July 15, 2013 | By Mikael Wood
Jay-Z and Kanye West argued for days over the songs "Holy Grail" and "Oceans," Jay-Z said in a new interview with the BBC's Zane Lowe. "We had this whole plan when me and Kanye did [the] 'Watch the Throne' album that we would go right into our solos after that," he said in the interview, referring to the rappers' joint 2011 disc, according to Britain's NME . "Soon as I thought we had wrapped up 'Watch the Throne,' I made two records -- I had 'Holy Grail' and 'Oceans.'" But once Jay-Z played the songs for West, the latter evidently insisted they go on "Watch the Throne.
July 14, 2013 | By Randall Roberts, Los Angeles Times Pop Music Critic
To judge by the media coverage this summer, only two hip-hop albums of note have been released. Both were recorded by multi-platinum multimillionaires raised on first- and second-generation hip-hop. As even your grandma could probably tell you, these albums, rolled out with the help of the sharpest marketing teams money can buy, are "Yeezus" by Kanye West and "Magna Carta Holy Grail" by Jay-Z, West's former label mate and "Watch the Throne" collaborator. What elders perhaps don't know, though, is that beneath the self-described Watchers are a legion of MCs a decade or more younger upending a genre that the reigning monarchs claim to control.
July 12, 2013 | By Jamie Wetherbe
Jay-Z has turned the second song of his new album “Magna Carta Holy Grail" into a new art form. The musical mogul Wednesday repeatedly rapped “Picasso Baby" during a six-hour performance piece at the Pace Gallery in New York. In what will likely become a music video, Jay-Z was surrounded by an entourage of cameras, curators, celebrities and Picasso's own granddaughter. “I'm the modern day Pablo / Picasso, baby,” the rapper repeated to a demur Diana Widmaier Picasso.
July 11, 2013 | By Matt Wilhalme
Rapper Jay-Z's trademark look may have helped make the Yankees cap famous off the field, but now he reportedly wants to help outfielder Yasiel Puig do the same for the Dodgers cap. Roc Nation Sports, the sports management division of Jay-Z's Roc Nation entertainment company, is looking to land Puig as a client, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports .   The rapper's contact information was given to Puig, a 22-year-old Cuban defector, by one of his teammates when the Dodgers were in New York for a series against the Yankees in June, according to the report.
July 10, 2013 | By Mikael Wood
Jay-Z drew both praise and scorn last week by unveiling his latest studio album, "Magna Carta Holy Grail," through an exclusive smartphone app. Music industry pundits hailed the Brooklyn rapper's business acumen; listeners complained about the app's crummy performance. (As for the album itself, reviews have been similarly mixed .) But if Jay-Z fancies himself a pioneer in digital music distribution, he's not ready to leave behind old models quite yet. TIMELINE: Summer's must see concerts Early Wednesday, Third Man Records -- the Nashville-based company founded by Jack White of the White Stripes -- announced that it would release the vinyl edition of "Magna Carta Holy Grail" "in the coming weeks," according to a press release.
July 10, 2013 | By Steven Zeitchik
Jay-Z has a flair for the theatrical. Does he also have a flair for the cinematic? The rapper's latest stunt, a six-hour performance of “Picasso Baby” - he rapped the song over and over at an art gallery in New York on Wednesday to promote his new record “Magna Carta Holy Grail” - is apparently being shot for a music video. But it's not just any music video. It's a video for the Hollywood director Mark Romanek, who had a little burst of cinema with his “99 Problems” video for Jay-Z several years back.  (Though I'm currently in New York, I wasn't able to attend Wednesday's show.
July 9, 2013 | By Randall Roberts, Los Angeles Times Pop Music Critic
Even though the coverage seems to have gone on for years, a mere five days have passed since users of a particular brand of smartphone (and anybody willing to illegally download music) first heard “Magna Carta Holy Grail,” the 12th solo album by Jay-Z. The record, which has received fair reviews, has been the focus of a massive TV ad campaign, voluminous Twitter and Facebook comments and many, many opinion pieces. And through it all, Jay-Z's been mostly silent, save for brief moments when he's opined during the smartphone commercials.
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