From slinging drugs in Brooklyn’s Marcy Projects, to selling millions of records and hosting Grammys pre-game parties in Los Angeles, JAY-Z’s career is a path that most rappers only dream of emulating. But regardless of anyone’s current situation, the rapper released a new poem on Wednesday (Aug. 30), encouraging people to “Dream On.”
The poem and its accompanying visual reflect on Hov’s humble beginnings in the Brooklyn projects, illustrating the challenges he faced as a young black boy. But as the video cuts to dark and gloomy images, Jay emphasizes his desire to dream and change his circumstances. “When I first saw stars, television was my telescope,” he says. “My vision was big enough to get out of the space. I wanted to pass how far I see. I wondered if a kid from Mars see a kid from Marcy.”
As the camera lens then settles on an open notebook with various notes or rhymes jotted down, Jigga offers some words of encouragement to others struggling to see beyond the horizon. “You are whatever you say you are. Turn any situation around.
“Dream On” was released in collaboration with Budweiser in preparation for the upcoming Made In America Festival. JAY-Z is scheduled to headline the music event in Philadelphia this year, along with J. Cole, Solange, and more. Made in America will go down on Sept. 2 and Sept. 3.
Watch the visual for “Dream On” above.