Something Jay-Z’s former business partner, Dame Dash, said in his excellent interview on The Combat Jack Show really stuck with me: “Taste is surprisingly cheap.” It’s true. Good taste doesn’t come from having tons of money, but from exposure to different ideas and being open-minded and accepting of new things.
Jay-Z has been selling his personal taste for the bulk of his career, and it is as much a part of his brand as his music. He preferred platinum jewelry to gold. We listened. He chose Cristal over Moet. We listened again. He got older and shed his jerseys for a more buttoned up look. Once again, we listened. For almost two decades, Jay has had the public’s attention and used it to sell himself as a purveyor of a lifestyle to which many hip-hop fans continue to aspire.
The annual Made In America Festival is another example of Jay-Z’s personal taste also serving as an essential part of his personal brand. The eclectic mix of performers from last year’s first run, including himself as a co-headliner, had hip-hop legends, genre benders, long awaited comeback performances, and commercial favorites sharing the stage.
This year’s lineup, which will again take place in Philadelphia during Labor Day weekend, looks equally intriguing with a wide range of acts from several genres that should satisfy the appetites of the most disaffected hipster and the wide-eyed pop fanatic. Notable names include Solange Knowles, all four members of Black Hippy, Wiz Khalifa, A$AP Rocky, Public Enemy (!!!) , Queens Of The Stone Age, and DeadMau5. Keeping it in the family, Beyonce will serve as this year’s co-headliner, along with Nine Inch Nails.
The full line up is available below and tickets can be purchased here. The dog days of summer should be even hotter.