Jay-Z Name-Dropped More Than 37 People on His 4:44 Album: Kanye West, Bill Cosby, Future and More

Rapper praises and shades lots of Hollywood names on his 13th studio album

By Kendall Fisher Jun 30, 2017 5:22 PMTags

We already know that Jay-Z's 4:44 album gives us a better look into his marriage with Beyoncé in what certainly appears to be at least a partial response to her Lemonade album, but it goes deeper into other relationships, too.

Not only does Hova provide insight into his feelings about his comrades and the hip-hop industry, he also makes a clear statement about which rappers he praises and those he thinks might need to take a step back.

In fact, Hova makes more than 37 references to different people, but musicians weren't the only names thrown around. He talks about everyone from artists to actors, CEOs to criminals and more.

Here's a breakdown of every name that was dropped in each song...

Beyoncé & Jay-Z Romance Recap

"Kill Jay Z"

Solange Knowles: "You egged Solange on / Knowin' all along /All you had to say you was wrong," Jigga raps, referencing the infamous elevator fight at the 2014 Met Gala.

Blue Ivy: He pays homage to his first-born, saying he needs to be a better husband in order to be a better father. "But you gotta do better, boy, you owe it to Blue / You had no father, you had the armor / But you got a daughter, gotta get softer."

Eric Benét: "You almost went Eric Benét / Let the baddest girl in the world get away," he raps, alluding to the singer's split from Halle Berry in 2003 following infidelity rumors.

Dominique Charriau/Michael Loccisano/D Dipasupil/Getty Images; ZUMA

Kanye West / Saint West: Jay takes a stab at Kim Kardashian's husband and even mentioned the name "Saint." He raps, "I know people backstab you, I feel bad too / But this 'f--k everybody' attitude ain't natural / But you ain't a Saint, this ain't KumbaYe / But you got hurt because you did cool by 'Ye / You gave him 20 million without blinkin' / He gave you 20 minutes on stage, f--k was he thinkin'?/ 'F--kin' wrong with everybody?' is what you sayin' / But if everybody's crazy, you're the one that's insane."

Lance "Un" Rivera: Rivera was the CEO and co-founder of Untertainment with Notorious B.I.G. Jay-Z admitted to stabbing "Un" in 1999 at a listening party in New York. "Crazy how life works / You got a knot in your chest, imagine how a knife hurts," he raps. "You stabbed Un over some records / Your excuse was 'He was talkin' too reckless!'"

Future: Jay-Z makes many references to infidelity, noting that he could have lost his wife and his family. He raps, "In the Future, other n----s playin' football with your son / You would've lost it." This seems to allude to the rumors that rapper Future cheated on Ciara, which caused them to split up several years ago. Ciara is now married to football star Russell Wilson, who Future publicly criticized for getting too close to his son, Future Zahir.

Beyonce's Pregnancy Fashion With Twins

"The Story of O.J."

O.J. Simpson: Obviously, the song title itself references the former football player turned criminal. Jay also raps, "O.J. like, 'I'm not black, I'm O.J.' / OK / House n---a, don't f--k with me," he said. "I'm a field n---a with shined cutlery / Gold-plated quarters where the butlers be."

Chance the Rapper: Jay and Bey have showed their constant support for the Grammy-winning rapper. In this track, he appears to make reference to Chance, saying, "Y'all out here still takin' advances, huh? / Me and my n----s takin real Chances, uh."

Matt Rourke/AP/Shutterstock


Chris Paul: Jay drops the NBA point guard's name, saying, "We drinkin' Cristal in, yeah/ Kept the trey on me like Chris Paulin'." Paul used to wear the No.3 jersey for the L.A. Clippers. 

Anita Baker: He also makes a reference to the singer, rapping, "I have no ceilings, ah, this that feelin', I'm that boy / Anita Baker's 'You Bring Me Joy.'"

Jimmy Iovine: Jay talks about the Interscope records co-founder, saying, "Respect Jimmy Iovine / But he gotta respect the Elohim as a whole new regime." Elohim is phrase often used for the word "God" in Hebrew.

Jay-Z Releases Highly Anticipated 4:44 Album

"Caught Their Eyes"

Prince: Hova makes reference to the late singer, rapping, "I sat down with Prince, eye to eye / He told me his wishes before he died."

Londell McMillan: McMillan was Prince's attorney before his death who now oversees his estate. Jay raps about the attorney in a large portion of the song, criticizing how he's been handling the late icon's estate. "Now, Londell McMillan, he must be color blind," Jay-Z says. "They only see green from them purple eyes."

Biggie Smalls: Though Jigga drop Notorious B.I.G's name several times, this is one of the first on the album. He says, "These industry n----s, they always been fishy / But ain't no Biggie, no lazy eye, huh."



Blue Ivy: The father-of-three drops his daughter's name once more, rapping about how ashamed he'd be if she knew he cheated on Beyoncé. "And if my children knew, I don't even know what I would do / If they ain't look at me the same," he says. "I would prob'ly die with all the shame / 'You did what with who?' / What good is a ménage à trois when you have a soulmate? / 'You risked that for Blue?'"

"Family Feud"

Tupac: Jay alludes to the idea that some rappers copy the style of late icons, like Tupac. "And old n----s, y'all stop actin' brand new," he raps. "Like Tupac ain't have a nose ring too, huh."

Steve Harvey: Harvey is the host of the TV show Family Feud. Jay-Z references him, rapping, "Nobody wins when the family feuds / But my stash can't fit into Steve Harvey's suit."


Becky: Remember "Becky with the good hair" from Bey's Lemonade album? Well, she's back. "Yeah, I'll f--k up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky," Jay-Z raps in this song. "A man that don't take care his family can't be rich."

Bill Cosby, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Biggie Smalls and Al Sharpton: Jay mentions all four men's names in one verse, rapping, "I'm tryna get these n---as with no stripes to be official / Y'all think small, I think Biggie / Y'all whole pass is in danger, 10 Mississippi / Al Sharpton in the mirror takin' selfies / How is him or Pill Cosby s'posed to help me? / Old n---as never accepted me / New n---as is the reason I stopped drinkin' Dos Equis / We all lose when the family feuds / What's better than one billionaire? Two / I'll be damned if I drink some Belvedere while Puff got Cîroc / Y'all need to stop."

Jay-Z Reveals His Mom Is a Lesbian on 4:44 Song "Smile"


Emory Jones: Emory is one of Jay-Z's friends from the beginning who spent 16 years in prison. Hov raps, "Emory passed you n----s and he did a bid."

Ty Ty Smith: Mentioning his co-founder of Roc Nation and good friend, Jay says, "Ty Ty jumped over n----s and he's like 5'6" / Got the heart of a giant, don't you ever forget."

Rae SremmurdBobby Shmurda and Nat Turner: Though he doesn't necessarily say the rap group's full name, Jay definitely references Rae Sremmurd (who is signed with EarDrummers) and their song "No Type." Hova raps, "Put that drum in your ear, don't get Srem'd / I'll Bobby Shmurda anybody you heard of / N----s could not be further, I fathered your style / 'Birth of a Nation,' Nat Turner style."

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images


Lenny Santiago: Lenny is the Senior Vice President of Jay's Roc Nation. He raps, "I don't post no threats on the internet / I just pose a threat, blame Lenny S. for that."

Lauryn Hill: The Fugees member was imprisoned after pleading guilty to tax evasion. Jay raps, "Y'all n----s still signing' deals? Still? / After all they done stole, for real? / After what they done to our Lauryn Hill?"

Doug E. Fresh: Hova references the Sony Music CEO, saying, "Doug ain't this tight, so / F--k what we sellin' / F--k is we makin'?"

Marcy Me

Jam Master Jay, Dennis Rodman, Michael Jordan and Isiah Thomas: Jay drops names of '90s icons, recalling, "Back when ratchet was a ratchet and the vixen was a vixen / And Jam Master Jay was alive I was mixin' / Cookin' coke in the kitchen / Back when Rodman was a Piston / Mike was losin' to Isiah, but he soon would get his sixth one." Jordan's Chicago Bulls lost to Thomas' Detroit Pistons in Game 7 of the NBA finals in 1990. However, Jordan came back with a championship win the following season.

Jay-Z's 4:44 Lyrics: All About Beyoncé, Blue Ivy, Cheating...and Becky

Denzel Washington, Slick Rick, Lisa Bonet, Beyoncé: He references even more '90s stars, rapping, "When Denzel was blottin' carpet, I'll pack a... nine millimeter / When Slick Rick made 'Mona Lisa' / When Lisa Bonet was Beyoncé of her day, I had divas, y'all."

Big Daddy Kane and Biggie Smalls: Once again, he talks about the '90s music legends, saying, "Shout out to Big Poppa, Daddy Kane, heroes."


Wu-Tang Clan: Jay pays homage to the iconic rap group, saying, "I've been listening to Wu-Tang and n---as like / 'Your seed, married his seed, married my seed' / That's how we keep Carter money all in the family."

His family: He references his mother in several songs (including revealing that she is a lesbian) as well as other members of his family. He raps, "Take those moneys and spread 'cross families / My sisters, Hattie and Lou, the nephews, cousins and TT / Eric, the rest to B for whatever she wants to do."