Jay-Z’s Holy Grail



Many feel that Jay-Z has turned into some sort of devil worshipper or that he is being disrespectful to God. However, many have misunderstood his biblical references due to lack of education. One must educate themselves on certain matters in order to interrupt them. Recently, Jay-Z released his album ‘Magna Carta’ which has received both negative and positive criticism. Of course anything that Jay-Z produces nowadays has to have some sort of devilish association because America society seems to think they know what he is all about. However, like numerous of times, American society has misinterpret what Jay-Z is trying to accomplish; especially with his new single ‘Holy Grail.’

The song ‘Holy Grail’ is strictly a metaphor for the power of fame and what one has to go through to achieve it. The song begins with the smooth vocals of Justin Timberlake: ‘You take the clothes off my back/And I let you/You’d steal the food right out my mouth/And I watch you eat it/I still don’t know why/Why I love you so much/You curse my name/In spite to put me to shame/Have my laundry in the streets/Dirty or clean/Give it up for fame/But I still don’t know why/Why I love it so much.” Of course the first thing that people are going to think is that he talking about a person. However, you must listen to the lyrics closely in order to know that he is talking about the miseries of being famous. Although he describes metaphorically what these miseries are, he loves the idea of fame. You can tell that this is metaphorical by the use of the word “it.” JT sings “Why I love it so much.” ‘It’ is usually used as a term for inanimate things. In contrast to “it’ being fame, “you” references the “media.” When he says “You curse my name/In spite to put me to shame/Have my laundry in the streets/Dirty or clean” that means the media, throws all his business (laundry) around rather if it’s good or bad. Jay’s second verse talks about how the paparazzi follows him everywhere but he can’t seem to understand why loves “it so much.”

So why call the song ‘Holy Grail?’ If you read the bible, you may never come across the story of the Holy Grail because many of the stories are myths. The most popular stories are in the various versions of King Arthur as well as, in modern times, The Da Vinci Code. In the story of King Arthur, Arthur and his knights search for the grail but never find it. The various myth of the Grail tell us that the Holy Grail is a cup in which Jesus Christ drank out of during the last supper. In addition to that, it is also said to be the cup that caught Jesus’s blood while he was hanging from the cross. Different myths describe the grail as being a stone or cauldron. However, no matter what shape the grail adapts, the grail represents divine power or just power. It is something so pure or natural, that people seem to overlook it.  Jay-Z names his song ‘Holy Grail’ because the eagerness for fame dominates him. He allows the media to overpower the image of him in order to follow his dream of being famous. The fame is power, however, it’s this power that is out of reach. The lyrics “runneth till the cup runs over, Holy grail”  references the biblical phrase “my cup runneth over” from Psalm 23:5. For the sake of Jay’s song, runneth means keep going. So for Jay, he will keep going until he reaches his power. However, because the grail is something so undefined, then the forms of power are undefined and then because a question of what is fame? What is power? And what will we do to get it?  Jay’s song can be interrupted in many ways but it’s not to be interrupted in a negative way.


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