Jay Z + Me

I think it was Dustin Curtis who said something along the lines of “you can learn a lot about someone by their bucket list,” and he had posted his publicly recently. (Posting it is a great idea by the way, people will help you with it.) I began to think about mine, which was a little strange because I’ve been trying to move away from desiring things or experiences and just be more grateful in the present, but immediately a few music ones came to mind: have WordPress name-checked in a major hip-hop song, be in a rap video, and perform with one of my favorite artists (somehow).

It was less than a week later I got an email from a friend who was helping organize a hush-hush event where Jay-Z would sing his song Picasso Baby over and over 6 hours while interacting with various artists and an audience as a performance piece, and there might even be an opportunity to be one of the people he interacted with. My jaw dropped.

The entire experience was fairly surreal, this article by Jerry Saltz captured it well, and in the end I did get to “perform” (in a very loose performance art sense) directly with Jay (we’re on a first syllable basis now), which was even caught in a photo. An hour into the event I couldn’t find any trace of it on Twitter or blogs. I brought my Nikon D3S to the event and snapped a few photos, some of which of his performance with Marina Abramovic turned out really well. If I could do it again the only thing I’d do differently is try and get portraits of more of the amazing artists who were there, from Andres Serrano to Elizabeth Peyton. Also huge thanks and kudos to Yvonne Force Villerael and Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn for putting together such an unique happening.

Here’s a video Shannon Lanier took when we went up together:

Here are some of the photos from the event:

Update: The video made from this is now online:

20 thoughts on “Jay Z + Me

  1. And you don’t stop…

    We have Matt, “The Motivator” shakin’ things up…
    Let’s all gather ’round, raise our cups and say “cheers; here’s to 10 great years!”
    Throw away your hangups; conquer your fears.
    Let’s get down, there’s fresh software in town…that makes it pure joy to spread the WORD around…

    Are you ready for some fun and play?
    Don’t hesitate…or delay.

    See, when you wanna have your say, just go to WordPress today.

    You gotta keep on pressin’ on!

  2. Nice – that must have been awesome!!! I go back and forth between posting a bucket list and keeping it private – the plus is people help you, the con(?) is you’re exposing yourself that much more to the world. :)

    I love that Marina was there, her own performance recently was really interesting!

  3. Matt, Wow, this is cool. You didn’t even have to write your bucket list to share it with the world and get results. I get ambivalent too about desiring, but this is all good. Congrats!

    1. He has a lot of charisma and the experience was so novel that while there were some slower moments it was pretty exciting the entire time. When it was slow was when he wasn’t performing.

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