Jay-Z Admits He Used To Forget His Lyrics When He Performed On LeBron James’ ‘The Shop’

LeBron James‘ HBO Show The Shop returns for its fourth season this Friday, bringing with it an impressive list of guests including Puerto Rican star Bad Bunny, WNBA champion Nneka Ogwumike, and Bron’s big homie Jay-Z. In a new clip previewing the season premiere airing this Friday, the latter makes an admission that might surprise a few fans of the 30-year rap veteran: He wasn’t always as cool, calm, and collected as his rap persona might have you believe.

When LeBron asks whether his guests ever got “so zoned out they couldn’t see anything,” Jay confesses, “In the beginning, I used to get on the stage and just forget all my lyrics.” Of course, Jay is far from the only rapper ever to forget his own lyrics — on stage or otherwise. Both Eminem and Lil Wayne have copped to having to Google their rhymes to ensure they don’t repeat themselves, while current hitmaker Lil Baby was stumped by a TikTokers lyrics quiz when he couldn’t complete his own bars. Among them, it’s probably easiest to forgive Jay and Wayne, who’ve both embraced a style of songwriting heavy on mental formulation without writing anything down.

The Shop airs 5/28 at 9 pm ET on HBO. Watch the promo above.