Jay-Z has finally broken his silence over the controversy about his trip to Cuba — and of course he did it in rap. In a new song, “Open Letter,” released via his Web site Thursday, the superstar is defiant, self-pitying — and eager to let you know how cool his vacation was.
I done turn Havana to Atlanta
Guayabera shirts and bandanas
He then gets political, suggesting that the uproar over his travels is rooted in snobbery against the multi-millionaire’s housing-project origins.
Got too much bread they try to jam ya
Boy from the hood but got White House clearance
Sorry, y’all, I don’t agree with your appearance
Politicians never done [expletive] for me, except lie to me, distort history
Wanna give me jail time, fine, let me commit a real crime
Then some name-dropping and angst over the trouble he may have caused his high-placed friends:
Obama said, chill, you gonna get me impeached.
We don’t need this [expletive] anyway, chill with me on the beach
(Updated, 2 p.m.: Did the president really say that? Er, no, said press secretary Jay Carney when asked about it in a press briefing today: “I guess nothing rhymes with Treasury, because Treasury offers and gives licenses for travel, as you know, and the White House has nothing to do with it. . . It’s a song. . . The president did not communicate with Jay-Z over this trip.”)
Finally, he engages his critics on the purpose of the longstanding embargo against U.S. tourism to Cuba, arguing that we have economic relations with other ideological opponents.
I’m in Cuba, I love Cubans. This communist talk is so confusing.
When it’s from China this very mike that I’m using.
Warning: Lots of [expletives]:
Earlier: Jay-Z and Beyonce Cuba trip authorized as ‘educational’; lawmakers criticize program, 4/10/13
Beyonce and Jay-Z in Cuba more controversial than past star visits; Rubio raises concerns, 4/8/13
Beyonce and Jay-Z trip to Cuba under congressional scrutiny, 4/7/13