Decoded is a book like no other: a collection of lyrics and their meanings that together tell the story of a culture, an art form, a moment in history, and one of the most provocative and successful artists of our time.
Praise for Decoded
“Compelling . . . provocative, evocative . . . Part autobiography, part lavishly illustrated commentary on the author’s own work, Decoded gives the reader a harrowing portrait of the rough worlds Jay-Z navigated in his youth, while at the same time deconstructing his lyrics.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“One of a handful of books that just about any hip hop fan should own.”—The New Yorker
“Elegantly designed, incisively written . . . an impressive leap by a man who has never been known for small steps.”—Los Angeles Times
“A riveting exploration of Jay-Z’s journey . . . So thoroughly engrossing, it reads like a good piece of cultural journalism.”—The Boston Globe
“Shawn Carter’s most honest airing of the experiences he drew on to create the mythic figure of Jay-Z . . . The scenes he recounts along the way are fascinating.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Hip-hop’s renaissance man drops a classic. . . . Heartfelt, passionate and slick.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Customer ReviewsSee All
Great book! It give real meaning to not just the artist, but the person. It give great understanding of why the person is the Artist that he became. This book allows you to look under the surface of life! Very well written and worth the money.
One of the best memoirs I have ever read about the hip hop culture.
This gave insight from Jay himself into the songs he wrote, and really hammered home the difficulty of growing up in the Marcy projects. It was very interesting getting info on him beginning as an artist, touring with Big Daddy Kane, rapping with Jaz-O, etc. Also his relationship with Memphis Bleek, his story coming up and his seriousness toward the art inspires me as a rapper myself. From being a kid to now you can clearly see that Shawn Carter was ahead of his time, and is here to stay in our memory. Thank you Hov.