Saturday night, ahead of the 60th annual Grammy Awards celebration, Jay-Z was the guest of honor at Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy gala where he received the Grammy Salute To Industry Icons Award. As he accpeted the award, the veteran emcee took the time to address why he previously turned away from the Grammys in a boycott toward the inception of his career.
As he spoke before the audience, Hov revealed that the act was actually catalyzed by a perceived snub of DMX in 1999 after the rapper had what Jay-Z said was an exceptional year and yet earned no nominations. Because of this Hov did not attend that year. He’d end up winning the award for Best Rap Album for his Vol. 2…Hard Knock Life.
“I didn’t come back until 2004 when a beautiful, young lady whom I love dearly had a solo album,” he said, alluding to wife Beyonce. “And I realized, ‘Man, art is super subjective and everyone is doing their best, and the Academy, they’re human like we are and they’re voting on things they like and it’s subjective.”
That year Beyonce had earned a total of six nominations and would walk away with five wins, including Best R&B Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for her Jay-Z-assisted “Crazy In Love.”
“If we believe in it — ’cause we do, we can pretend that we don’t care but we really care,” he went on to add. “We care ’cause we’ve seen the most incredible artists stand on that stage and we’re inspired to be that, so I was like, ‘I have to be here.’”
Sunday night Jay, who already has 21 Grammy awards in his trophy case, will be up for eight nominations including Album Of The Year.