For all the swagger that pours from his lyrics, Jay-Z sure comes across as a nice guy when he rides the subway.
In a brief segment excerpted from "Life + Times," a 24-minute documentary about the artist's involvement in building the Barclays Center, Jay-Z rides the subway to his eighth and final show at the arena.
The fact that Jay-Z opted for the R train over his Maybach may be shocking in itself, but it gets better: While on the train, he meets "Ellen," a charming older woman who chats with the superstar for a bit. During the encounter, he explains what he does for a living. "I make music," he says. Apparently surprised by Jay's choice of transportation, Ellen soon lets loose those four words we all secretly crave from a parental figure: "I'm proud of you."
READ the transcript of the video below, or WATCH the segment, above:
Ellen: Are you famous?
Jay: Yes. Not very famous, you don't know me.
Ellen: I don't know you, but...
Jay: But I'll get there some day.
Jay: My name is Jay. What's your name?
Ellen: Ellen. What do you do?
Jay: I make music.
Ellen: Did you just do a performance?
Jay: I'm on my way to the performance at the new Brooklyn arena.
Ellen: Oh, fabulous!
Jay: I performed eight shows, actually... This is the last show.
Ellen: And you're going by subway?
Ellen: I'm proud of you. Say your name again, just so I get it.
Jay: Jay. Jay Z
Ellen: Oh, you're Jay-Z! I know about Jay-Z.
UPDATE: Wednesday, 5:15 p.m -- According to the Washington Post, the "older lady" Jay-Z chats with in the video is none other than Ellen Grossman, a prominent fixture in the New York art scene.
Reached for comment by The New York Times, Grossman said she credits her sudden celebrity status to the otherwise negative world around us. “I think the world is in the mood for a sweet, old lady,” she said.