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Jay-Z Resolves the $500K vs. Lunch Debate: “Take the Money,” He Advises

Jay-Z (Credits: Essence)

If given the opportunity, would you opt for a $500,000 windfall or a casual lunch with the legendary rapper JAY-Z? This iconic figure in the world of rap recently engaged in a conversation with Gayle King on CBS Mornings, addressing a viral question that has stirred considerable debate among JAY-Z’s fanbase. With a pragmatic perspective, he offered insightful business advice to resolve the dilemma.

In an exclusive clip premiering on PEOPLE, JAY-Z, aged 53, made his stance unequivocally clear, saying, “You gotta take the money. What else could I say?” King, aged 68, delved into the philosophy underpinning this debate, explaining that many believe the potential “wisdom” they could gain from the renowned “99 Problems” rapper might enable them to surpass the value of $500,000 on their own.


Jay-Z (Credits: Weekly Entertainment)

However, even if the choice were up to JAY-Z himself, he would still opt for the money. “Because you can get all that wisdom in my music for $10.99. That’s a lousy deal. I wouldn’t advise you to strike a bad deal,” he counseled. “Take the $500,000, buy some of my albums, and absorb the messages within. It’s all there.”

He further elucidated, “If you piece it together and truly listen to the music for the lyrics and the essence, it’s all there. Everything I predicted has come to pass. Everything I aspired to achieve, I’ve accomplished, and the blueprint is right there.” In this context, he alluded to the title of his iconic 2001 album, “The Blueprint,” emphasizing how it serves as a literal roadmap for his life and journey.

The origins of this popular online question remain unclear, but variations of it have circulated on platforms like Instagram, dating back at least as early as 2017. Users pondered dilemmas such as, “$10,000 in cash or a 10-minute dinner with Jay-Z?”

Just recently, a fan seized the opportunity to ask JAY-Z about the debate during a Dallas Cowboys and Los Angeles Chargers game. In a video clip shared on social media, the fan proclaimed, “I’m taking that $500K. I ain’t taking that dinner. I’m taking that $500K. Do you feel me? It’s love, though.” To this, the Grammy winner responded simply, “Be good, my friend.”

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