This is the intimate, first-person chronicle of the life and work of Jay-Z, born Shawn Carter in Brooklyn's notorious Marcy Projects, now known to many as the greatest rapper alive.
Told through lyrics, images and personal narrative, Decoded shares the story of Jay-Z's life through the 10 codes that define him, giving an unparalleled insight into his background, influences and the artistic process that shapes his work. Each chapter features a highly personal narrative section followed by a visually captivating selection of his most famous and provocative lyrics underlining the chapter's themes, along with Jay-Z's own 'decoding' of each lyric, uncovering the wordplay and stories behind the song.
This is a brilliant insight into the art and poetry of hip-hop, as well as the life of one of the genre's greatest artists.
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People don't just expect new records from Jay - they expect epochal events, game-changing statements - Rolling Stone
Hip-hop's undisputed king - The Times
The most successful rapper alive - Guardian
The undisputed king of rap - NME
Will Self dismissed rap as unmelodic, inarticulate ranting - until Jay-Z's eloquent memoir and an anthology of lyrics came along to change his mind - The Times
gripping...a classily produced mash-up of memoir, lyrical analysis and coffee-table art book..this book is eye-opening...Both fans and newcomers alike should be left with a deepened appreciation for the verbal dexterity of a conflicted man - The Daily Telegraph
a riveting insight - The News of the World
A must-read for anyone seeking insight into why hip hop has been the essential musical narrative of recent decades - Daily Telegraph