Rapper Jay-Z’s mum Gloria Carter has come out as a lesbian in one of her son’s new songs.
The rapper, whose real name is Shawn Carter, released his new album 4:44 on Friday through his online streaming service Tidal.
And as well as giving fans precious insight into his marriage with Beyonce, Jay-Z also helps his mum (both pictured) come out and live “happily and freely” on the powerful track “Smile”.
Jay-Z raps: “Mama had four kids, but she’s a lesbian/Had to pretend so long that she’s a thespian.
“Had to hide in the closet, so she medicate/Society shame and the pain was too much to take.”
He continues: “Cried tears of joy when you fell in love/Don’t matter to me if it’s a him or her.
“I just wanna see you smile through all the hate/Marie Antoinette, baby, let ’em eat cake.”
Towards the end of the track, Gloria Carter herself opens up about her journey.
“Living in the shadows. Can you imagine what kind of life it is to live? In the shadows people see you as happy and free. Because that’s what you want them to see. Living two lives, happy but not free,” she says.
“You live in the shadows for fear of someone hurting your family or the person you love. The world is changing and they say it’s time to be free.
“But you live with the fear of just being me. Living in the shadows feels like the safe place to be. No harm for them. No harm for me.
“But life is short, and it’s time to be free. Love who you love, because life isn’t guaranteed. Smile.”
Jay-Z explained to iHeartRadio (via The Hollywood Reporter) that the song is “just what it is.”
“There are gonna be bad times, and those bad times can do two things: They can get you in a place where you’re stuck in a rut, or it can make your future that much better because you’ve experienced these things,” he said.