Jay-Z revealed that he has always had a talent for words and was an exceptional reader as a young child, with a reading age well above his years.
The Hip-Hop mogul opened up about his early love of reading during an interview with Gayle King. Hov reflected on his childhood while surrounded by books at his Book of HOV exhibit at the Brooklyn Library.
In a preview clip from the interview, Jay-Z recalled a teacher who had a big influence on him and helped encourage his reading habits.
“Miss Loudon was my sixth grade teacher. In the sixth grade, I was reading on a 12th grade level,” Jay-Z explained. “That excited me. ‘Cause everyone was excited. And Miss Loudon, she was excited. It felt like me riding my bike at 4, the way people reacted to that.”
According to Jay-Z, he would feed off the praise, which increased his motivation to keep reading and to excel at it.
In another clip from his sit-down with Gayle King, Jay-Z admitted something has replaced music as his first love.
“I think what matters most is, today, is, being a beacon and helping out… my culture. People of color. I think I pull the most satisfaction from that. Like making music earlier was my first love,” the Roc Nation founder stated.
Jay-Z also added, “I could sit there for hours. It consumed me. That’s why my pace was so fast. I had so much material… And I think now the idea of taking that platform and, reproducing it for others or doing something like [Reform Alliance]… I think I derive the most joy from that.”
The Jay-Z And Gayle King: Brooklyn’s Own television special premiered Tuesday (November 14) on CBS.