By Maurice Bobb
The 55th annual Grammys are in Los Angeles and, as of Thursday (February 7), so is Jay-Z, which makes for good odds that the Roc Nation CEO, after skipping the show for the previous two years, will be in Staples Center Sunday night. Place cards also show that he and Beyonce are supposed to be seated next to Justin Timberlake and his wife Jessica Biel.
Paparazzi photos placed Hov, along with Beyoncé, and one-year old daughter, Blue Ivy, in Venice after hip-hop’s first family had lunch at Gjelina restaurant, a trendy celebrity hot spot on Abbot Kinney Blvd, sparking industry-wide debates about whether or not Jay plans to be in the building to watch Bey present or, better yet, join Justin Timberlake on stage while he performs his latest single, “Suit & Tie,” from his highly-anticipated comeback album, The 20/20 Experience.
Jigga recently performed with JT in New Orleans ahead of Super Bowl XLVII at the DirecTV Super Saturday Night party, which is a good indication that he’ll help the “SexyBack” singer make his first performance slot on the show in nearly four years one for the record books.
Stepping on stage in a “Tom Ford tuxedo for no reason” to drop opulent lines like “All Saints for my angel/Alexander Wang too/Ass tight denim and some Dunks/I show you how to do this Young,” will only add to the telecast’s hip-hop presence, which is the one of the “99 Problems” Hov originally had with the Grammys back in 2002 when he famously boycotted the program.
“I am boycotting the Grammys because too many major rap artists continue to be overlooked,” he said at the time. “Rappers deserve more attention from the Grammy committee and from the whole world. If it’s got a gun everybody knows about it; but if we go on a world tour, no one knows.”
Memorable performances notwithstanding, the minority owner of the Brooklyn Nets also has six other golden reasons not to eschew the ceremony this year: nominations for Best Rap Performance for “N—as In Paris” and “I Do,” Best Rap Song for “N—as In Paris,” Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for “No Church in the Wild” and “Talk That Talk” and Best Short Form Music Video for “No Church in the Wild,” from his joint LP with Kanye West, Watch the Throne.
Like Fun., Mumford & Sons, Frank Ocean and Kanye West, Jay has a whopping six noms, which means that odds are really good that he’ll add at least one more gramophone to his collection of 14, which includes a Best Rap Album win in 1999 for his five times platinum third studio album, Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life.
Get psyched for Grammy night and don’t miss our live Grammy red carpet stream, starting Sunday night at 6 p.m. ET.