15 Years of ‘The Black Album’

15 Years of ‘The Black Album’

Today in 2003, Jay-Z released his eighth studio album, The Black Album. At the time, Hov faked us out with a retirement announcement that we now know to be false — he has released five studio albums since then. Even though it wasn’t a retirement, it was definitely the conclusion of an era; after giving us an album a year since 1996, Jay-Z slowed his pace drastically.

The album’s three singles, “Change Clothes,” “Dirt off Your Shoulder” and “99 Problems,” peaked at No. 10, No. 5 and No. 30, respectively. Interestingly enough, the lowest-charting single from that album is arguably its most enduring track and widely considered to be a classic.

With over 3.5 million copies sold in the US alone, The Black Album is one of Jay-Z’s most successful LPs. Watch the video for “Change Clothes” (featuring Pharrell Williams) below — because even though it is the least-remembered of the album’s singles, I will always be partial to a melody.

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