Jay-Z made a mark on the hip-hop scene with his 1996 debut album Reasonable Doubt and has gone on to create a musical legacy worth remembering in the decades since. This week, the 52-year-old MC reminded fans of his longevity in the game with an Instagram pic posted by his longtime engineer Young Guru.
The Roc Nation founder can be seen posing at the edge of a couch with his extensive Grammy collection, surrounded by bowls of snacks. Jay appears to be drinking from one of the trophies — an ode to the famous pic of him drinking his D’USSÉ cognac out of a Grammy at the 2013 ceremony.
“It’s crazy how one 5 minute convo with HOV can refocus your entire life,” Young Guru captioned the post. “I appreciate you, Big Homie. My anchor is strong. For motivational purpose only. But this is my real life!”
While Jay-Z has earned 24 Grammys over the years, we count 21 visible in the pic — though it’s likely the last trio of trophies could be right behind him in the photo.
The post has garnered more than 31,000 likes so far.
The Jiggaman is tied with his frequent collaborator Kanye West for the most Grammys for any hip-hop artist. Jay began racking up Grammys in 1999 when his third project, Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life, won best rap album.
In 2004, he took home best R&B song and best rap/sung collaboration for his “Crazy In Love” duet with wife Beyoncé, and in 2013, he and West won three awards for their Watch the Throne tracks “N—as in Paris” (best rap song, best rap performance) and “No Church in the Wild” (best rap/sung collaboration).
Despite his staggering Grammy success — including 83 nominations overall, more than anyone else in history — Jay-Z hasn’t always had a great relationship with the Recording Academy. In 1999, he boycotted the ceremony after two projects by DMX — It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot and Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood — were both snubbed in the best rap album category. Jay talked about boycotting the Grammys on LeBron James’ The Shop last year. “I won that year for rap album, so my first Grammy win, I wasn’t there. I boycotted it for him,” he said of the rapper, who died in 2021 at age 50. “There was a competitive thing, but it was big love.”
Jay-Z has made a few jabs at the Grammys over the years, like when he rapped on his track “APESH–” with Beyoncé in 2018, “Tell the Grammys f– that 0-for-8 sh–,” in reference to not winning any awards at the ceremony earlier that year when he went in as the leading nominee with eight nods.
While Jay-Z is the all-time nominations leader, he may lose that status next week, when the 65th annual Grammy nominations are announced. But he probably won’t mind too much: He could lose it to his wife, Beyoncé, who currently has 79 career nominations and is expected to be nominated in numerous categories. (Jay stands to also pick up at least two nominations for his involvement on Beyoncé’s Renaissance album.)
Grammy nominations for the 2023 ceremony are set to be announced on Tuesday. The awards show will be held at Los Angeles’ Crypto.com Arena on Feb. 5.