Jay-Z became a crack dealer at age 13 and dodged bullets in the Brooklyn projects before moving "from grams to Grammys." He opens up about his drug dealing past in October's O magazine in an interview with Oprah herself.
Oprah: So by the time you were 13, this was a way of life. Did the lifestyle frighten you?
Jay-Z: No. It was normal. And at some point, you become addicted to the feeling. The uncertainty and adrenaline and danger of that lifestyle.
Oprah: This is where we differ. This is where we differ. Because I'd be very scared! Weren't you shot at three times--within six feet--and you lived to talk about it?
Jay-Z: That was divine intervention. Divine intervention, and nobody knowing how to shoot.
Oprah: What happened in each situation?
Jay-Z: It was one situation, three shots.
Oprah: So he was a bad shot.
Jay-Z: Well, no one really practices shooting a TEC-9 machine gun, right? And when you're a kid, with little bony arms--no wonder nobody could aim.
You can read the entire interview, where Jay-Z talks about his quiet wedding to Beyonce and their standing Sunday night pizza date here.