The now retired Jay-Z
once again set things straight on “Last Call with Carson Daly” Wednesday
night (November 10), addressing rumors that he’s working with Producer Dr.
Dre and why he took another chance on the Best of Both Worlds tour with R&B
star R. Kelly.
According to Jay,
after Kelly left Madison Square Garden the night of the pepper spray incident,
multi-platinum R&B artist Usher, who was in the audience, eagerly offered
really a big thing for me to see him do that [because] he’s a superstar
in his own right and he performed with no backing music, no anything,”
said Jay. “He just grabbed the mic and sounded just like the record.”
Jay revealed he
didn’t perceive the Best of Both Worlds tour as a competition with Kelly
until things came to a halt.
was supposed to be, you do the best at what you do, I do the best at what I
do,” said Jay. “Now that everything has come to fruition, I see
it was a competition.”
According to Jay,
Kelly’s legal troubles regarding child pornography tapes were the main
reason the initial venture between the two superstars failed.
“I was like
let’s fall back from this project because real life comes before entertainment,”
said Jay of the first attempt.
Despite the collapse
of the recent tour, the duo's album Unfinished Business was the number
one record in the country last week.
entirely dismiss a potential collaboration with Dr. Dre, who has worked with
Universal label mates Eminem and 50 Cent on their multi-platinum albums.
Dre in L.A. one time and we just talked about how magical that would be,”
said Jay. “I don’t know how that spread so far, but it really went
a long way.”
Jay went on to
chastise the recording industry for focusing too much on the business instead
of the music.
The Brooklyn emcee
discussed his incentive for possibly joining Def Jam as a top executive, a story
that has been widely reported in the past weeks.
thing is to get in place where I can put the focus back on artistry, put the
music first,” said Jay.
Regarding the release
of his last album The Black Album, Jay explained that he originally
wanted to put it out “under the radar” without singles or promotion.
The Black Album
was released last year and Jay’s film "Fade to Black" was released
in theatres November 5.
Jay is also reportedly
in talks with Universal Music Group along with Roc-A-Fella co-founders Damon
Dash and Kareem “ Biggs” Burke to sell Roc-A-Fella Records.