The Mayor of New York City, Eric Adams, recently honoured Jay-Z and his mother at the Brooklyn Public Library Gala for their cultural impact on the city. The lavish event was held in the emcee’s home borough, and upon receiving the honour, Jay-Z graced the stage and delivered a speech on behalf of his mother, who unfortunately couldn’t attend.
Reflecting on his mother and his Brooklyn origins, the rhymer (real name Shawn Carter) began, “I figured if these young men could speak on behalf of their dad, I could speak on behalf of my mom. Dr. Gloria had to see a doctor earlier. She’s gonna be very upset that I told y’all that. She gave me a very bad excuse, and I couldn’t do it and lie to the good people of Brooklyn.”
Admitting that there had been a party the night before the ceremony, the Black Album artist continued, “I think she’s hungover. There’s no other way to put it. She wanted to be with you guys, but this is what she would want me to say. Y’all not taping this, are you?”
The event was not only a tribute to the lyricist who escaped the borough when it was an impoverished hub of crime but also a way to promote and draw attention to the Brooklyn Public Library, which plays host to Jay-Z’s exhibition, ‘The Book of HOV’.
The exhibition began in July and will conclude in December and is free for all visitors. The display chronicles Carter’s life from the Marcy Houses in Bedford-Stuyvesant to the upper echelon of the music industry.
The library describes the exhibition as one that “presents thousands of archived objects, including original recording masters, never-before-seen photos, iconic stage wear, prestigious awards and recognitions, as well as videos and artefacts from every facet of Jay-Z’s professional life.”
Last month, the exhibition made another addition with the installation of Carter’s classic off-white Lexus GS 300 from his ‘Dead Presidents’ music video. You can watch Jay-Z at the event below.