It’s undeniable that rap legend Jay-Z has left an indelible mark on the music industry and he recently received a huge honor for his contributions to hip-hop and beyond. According to Billboard, his album The Blueprint has been inducted into the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry; making it the 10th hip-hop recording to join the collection.
The project—which was the rapper’s sixth studio album—was released in 2001. The body of work included songs like “Izzo (H.O.V.A.),” “Heart Of The City (Ain’t No Love),” “Song Cry,” “Renegade,” and many other memorable songs. “I’m a person that believes that everything that happens to you in life will shape you as a person. Every struggle and every challenge that’s placed in front of you is to see how strong of a person you’re going to become,” said Carter in a rare interview before The Blueprint album was released. “The Blueprint is like the blueprint of my life. It’s the things that made me the way I am; shaped me and all my beliefs and ideas. It’s also a blueprint for rappers in this business.”
His album was one of 25 influential pieces of music that were inducted this year. Others that were selected included Curtis Mayfield’s “Superfly,” Earth, Wind, & Fire’s song “September” and the song “Mississippi Goddam” by Nina Simone. “The National Recording Registry honors the music that enriches our souls, the voices that tell our stories and the sounds that mirror our lives.” Carla Hayden, who serves as a librarian at the Library of Congress, said in a statement. “The influence of recorded sound over its nearly 160-year history has been profound and technology has increased its reach and significance exponentially. The Library of Congress and its many collaborators are working to preserve these sounds and moments in time, which reflect our past, present and future.”
Other hip-hop projects that have been added in the past include Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight,” Run-D.M.C.’s Raising Hell, “Dear Mama” by 2Pac and Lauryn Hill’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. Carter has been making headlines for the work that he’s doing surrounding criminal justice reform.