jay-z TIME

If “White House clearance” wasn’t enough for Sean Carter to boast about this month, his latest media accolade is. Hov graces one of seven new covers for TIME magazine’s annual “100 Most Influential People in the World” issue. But even more impressive: Michael Bloomberg (y’know, the Mayor of New York) penned the feature on his city’s cultural icon. Just another reason for this Marcy kid to shout, Mama, I made it!”

[Jay-Z’s] an artist-entrepreneur who stands at the center of culture and commerce in 21st century America, and his influence stretches across races, religions and regions. He’s never forgotten his roots — “Empire State of Mind” was a love song to our city — and as a co-owner of the NBA Nets, he helped bring a major league sports team back to Brooklyn, not far from his old neighborhood. In nearly everything he’s tried, he’s found success. (He even put a ring on Beyoncé.) And in doing so, he’s proved that the American Dream is alive and well.

Also included in this year’s “100 Most Influential People in the World” list are Beyoncé, Michelle Obama, Frank Ocean, Miguel, LeBron James and more. Check out the full list here, and read Mayor Bloomberg’s words on Jay here.

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