Veteran rapper and business mogul Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter dazzled his legion of fans with the release of his Decoded memoir last November. Though originally a hardcover, the book will be getting a paperback reboot in a week, dropping on November 1. The extended version of Decoded features a new afterword and 16 pages of fresh material-–including three new song breakdowns.
Several excerpts from the updated material have already hit the Web, including a breakdown of the 1997 track “Young G’s” from Puff Daddy & The Family’s No Way Out album, which features both Hov and the Notorious B.I.G. As fashioned in the original hardcover, Jay-Z and co-author Dream Hampton take readers on a behind-the-scenes journey through the song’s verses.
“Young G’s” was the second and final song that Jay-Z recorded with Biggie, with their chemistry bubbling over from their 1996 pairing on Jay’s debut Reasonable Doubt (the blistering duet “Brooklyn’s Finest” being one of the true standouts).
Below, check out a sample of the decoded lines from Jay-Z’s “Young G’s” verse and read more at Complex.
Jay-Z’s verse: “These here’s the dog years1 ’cept motherf—s don’t shed/I try to bring you life but motherf—s want dead/So I travel with the barrel, with the chrome, with the lead2/’Cause when it’s on, then it’s on, till shots flown through your head”
The breakdown: This might seem redundant—each of these, the barrel, the chrome, and the lead, is talking about the same thing—but breaking them down into their components allows the image to build in the listener’s mind, like the aw sh– scene in every action movie where the hero assembles his gun, locks, and loads.
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