New York rapper Jay-Z is known to quote Notorious B.I.G.’s lyrics several times in his music, weaving his rhymes into his own verses.
In a recent interview with Roc4Life, Hov explains that B.I.G. is an inspiration to him and using his rhymes is a way to keep his music alive.
“There was a vow in that song about Big. So doing that was my way of always keeping him fresh and keeping his music fresh on everyone’s mind,” he said. “So I’m inspired by music and I’m a fan and a historian. I study music and different emotions and things like that. So, if I’m inspired by it, I just use it. It’s not a crutch for me. I can write a song without using anyone’s lyric at all.”
Jay explains that he doesn’t need to prove he can write raps, as his abilities show for it.
“That sums the whole thing up. Be comfortable with yourself and your ability. You don’t have that insecurity when people say, ‘Oh he stealing homeboy’s lyrics, he can’t write a rap.’ We can sit down next to anybody and write two verses. They could write and I could sit up there and come with a verse and we can see who comes up with a better verse any day.”
Peep a clip from the interview below.