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JAY-Z's Mother Gloria Carter Comes Out As Lesbian On Touching Duet, "Smile"

"Love who you love, because life isn’t guaranteed."

Continuing the voyage of vulnerability on 4:44, JAY-Z pivots to highlight his mother Gloria Carter and her sexual identity. Between the sample of Stevie Wonder’s “Love’s In Need Of Love Today" on "Smile," the rapper reveals his mother's same sex relationship and how happy he was for her to find love again.

"Mama had four kids, but she’s a lesbian/Had to pretend so long that she’s a thespian," he spits. "Had to hide in the closet, so she medicate/Society shame and the pain was too much to take/Cried tears of joy when you fell in love/Don’t matter to me if it’s a him or her."

For the song's outro, Ms. Carter's gentle voice comes in as she recites a spoken word piece about true freedom.

Can you imagine what kind of life it is to live?
In the shadows people see you as happy and free
Because that’s what you want them to see
Living two lives, happy, but not free
You live in the shadows for fear of someone hurting your family or the person you love
The world is changing and they say it’s time to be free
But you live with the fear of just being me
Living in the shadow feels like the safe place to be
No harm for them, no harm for me
But life is short, and it’s time to be free
Love who you love, because life isn’t guaranteed. Smile.

Almost immediately, JAY's thoughts on same sex marriage from 2012 have permeated through the interwebs. In the interview with CNN, the rapper voice his support for the LGBTQ community. “What people do in their own homes is their business and you can choose to love whoever you love," he said. "That’s their business. [It] is no different than discriminating against blacks. It’s discrimination plain and simple. I think [supporting same sex marriage] is the right thing to do, so whether it costs [Obama] votes or not—again, it’s not about votes. It’s about people. It’s the right thing to do as a human being.”

After hearing Ms. Carter's reveal, GLAAD showed their support with the group's President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis calling her statement "powerful" for lesbian women of color.

“Lesbian women are all too often erased or excluded from narratives surrounding LGBTQ people," she said."By sharing her truth with the world, Gloria Carter is increasing visibility of lesbian women of color at a critical time and sending a powerful message of empowerment to the entire LGBTQ community that is perfectly timed with the end of Pride Month.”

Listen to "Smile" below.

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Buju Banton Partners With Roc Nation, Releases 'Steppa' Video

Nearly a year after his release from prison, Buju Banton is entering a new stage of his music career with a partnership with Roc Nation.

Roc Nation announced the news today (Nov. 22), with the release of a new visual for the song "Steppa." The video has the reggae legend performing and fellowshipping in Blue Mountains, Jamaica, and follows the release of another new song, "Trust," produced by Dave Kelly. Buju's new music with Roc Nation will include distribution by Island Records.

“It’s an honor to work with a legend and trailblazer of Buju’s caliber –His music catalog is simply unparalleled. We’re thrilled to help propel his legacy forward and look forward to amplifying his resurgence on a global level,” said Roc Nation co-presidents Shari Bryant and Omar Grant in a statement.

Buju Banton's illustrious career, which dates back to the late 1980s, includes breaking multiple sales and chart records in Jamaica and collaborating with U.S. stars such as John Legend, DJ Khaled, and Fat Joe. His latest studio album, Before The Dawn (2010), won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album. Friday's announcement follows the completion of his "Long Walk To Freedom" tour, which attracted more than 30,000 people to its key stop of Buju's stomping grounds in Kingston, Jamaica. The concert was the first time a Jamaican artist headlined the National Stadium since Bob Marley's performance at the One Love Peace Concert on April 22,1978.

Watch the video for "Steppa" above, and listen to "Trust" below.

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French Montana Hospitalized For Series Of Medical Ailments

On Thursday (Nov. 21), medical authorities responded to an emergency call derived from French Montana's Calabasas home. According to TMZ, the "Shot Caller" rapper began to experience health ailments from nausea to an increased heart rate.

Around 1:30 p.m., the officials arrived at the scene and transported the 35-year-old entertainer to a nearby hospital. Authorities were initially responding to a call about a robbery but it was a false alarm. He then began to experience health ailments that encouraged the authorities to take him to a hospital. Details of his condition are still being kept private. The Bronx-bred, Morocco-born artist has been on the go since the charting success of his 2018 hit "Unforgettable." After filming the song's video in Uganda, Montana was inspired to provide adequate health services for over 300,000 people, AXS reports.

"Health care is kind of a privilege right now but it needs to be a right," he said to CNN. "When it comes to humanity I feel like a lot of people gotta step up to make it better." Montana continued to state the power that artists have the power to make a significant change but shy away from doing so. "I feel like a lot of artists and a lot of actors and people that have a platform like mind don't like to touch them kind of subjects because they real risky."

Happy one year anniversary to my family in Uganda 🇺🇬 cant believe we got so much done in one year !! Thank u for the opportunity💪❤️ !! pic.twitter.com/VBeGRIi6Zg

— French Montana (@FrencHMonTanA) March 14, 2018

Details are still forthcoming.

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Kanye West To Debut ‘Nebuchadnezzar’ Opera At Hollywood Bowl

Kanye West will debut his new opera, Nebuchadnezzar, at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles Sunday (Nov. 24). The opera acts as an expression of the 42-year-old rapper’s “commitment to both his faith and ever-expanding musical palette,” according to West's record label, Def Jam.

Directed by Vanessa Beecroft, Nebuchadnezzar will feature Ye’s Sunday Service Collective, along with singer Peter Collins, and the group Infinity Song.

The production meshes elements of gospel, opera and fine art into an “innovative performance structure,” and is an original adaptation of the biblical story of the Babylonian King from the Book of Daniel. The story, set in 6th century B.C., recounts Nebuchadnezzar’s transition from “wicked, impure, self-declared ruler to a true believer who finds salvation in his faith.”

Nebuchadnezzar is the first large-scale production from West this year, outside of his Sunday Service performances. Last week, the father of four traveled to Houston where he made a guest appearance at Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church.

West and the Sunday Service choir also popped up at a Texas jail for an impromptu performance that was attended by around 200 inmates.

Tickets for Nebuchadnezzar can be purchased on Ticketmaster.com.

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