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Jay Z’s Candid Interview With Vanity Fair: “Crack Was Everywhere … It Was Inescapable”

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Jay Z is letting fans in on his story of rags to riches.

In an exclusive interview with Vanity Fair for the publication’s November issue, the rapper opens up about his struggle, life before fame, and his world as we all know it today.

During the interview, Hova told VF’s Lisa Robinson that his mother knew he was dealing drugs as a teenager. “But, we never really had those conversations. We just pretty much ignored it. But she knew. All the mothers knew. It sounds like ‘How could you let your son . . . ’ but I’m telling you, it was normal,” the rapper explained.

“Crack was everywhere … It was inescapable. There wasn’t any place you could go for isolation or a break. You go in the hallway; there are crackheads in the hallway. You look out in the puddles on the curbs … Crack vials are littered in the side of the curbs. You could smell it in the hallways, that putrid smell; I can’t explain it, but it’s still in my mind when I think about it.”

As a child, the rapper’s family struggled to make ends meat. The 43-year-old admitted to the publication that he was living in a tough situation.

“Sometimes we’d pay the light bill, sometimes we paid the phone, sometimes the gas went off. We weren’t starving … We were eating, we were OK. But it was things like you didn’t want to be embarrassed when you went to school; you didn’t want to have dirty sneakers or wear the same clothes over again.”

Jay Z recently made the list for Forbes highest-earning hip-hop artist, but the rapper didn’t reach that high point by music alone, but by having a business savvy mind. “I know about budgets. I was a drug dealer,” he said.

“To be in a drug deal, you need to know what you can spend, what you need to re-up. Or if you want to start some sort of barbershop or car wash … Those were the businesses back then. Things you can get in easily to get out of that life. At some point, you have to have an exit strategy, because your window is very small; you’re going to get locked up or you’re going to die.”

For more on Jay’s interview with VF, pick up the November issue on stands in LA/NY today, and nationally on November 8.

 

MUSIC

Is Trey Songz Completely Out Of Control?!

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Trey Songz used to be a singer known for sexually suggestive lyrics and his panache for saying “yuuuup.” Now, he may be known more as an R&B singer with a possible rage problem…

Trigga Trey has been accused of smacking a girl in the face with her own phone and now that accuser is suing for $50,000. The unidentified woman says that while at Philadelphia’s Vanity Grand Cabaret strip club she sought to get a snapshot with the singer, but he didn’t oblige. Instead, according to the woman, he pushed her phone back into her face and caused her glasses to break.

If true, this isn’t Trey’s first time getting way too aggressive for no d@mn reason. Just last year he became so upset over authorities ending his show in Detroit that he threw microphones and speakers from the stage. Unfortunately, he also injured a police officer in the process. In August, he reached a plea deal in that case and got his felony assault charge reduced to just two counts of disturbing the peace.

So, back to the fan who just wanted a photo. It looks like she’s only seeking coin and not criminal charges. And in Songz’s defense he does take pictures with some fans (see below), so maybe it was just the way she asked.

Trey Songz and a fan. (Getty Images)

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