The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) will honor JAY-Z with a special recognition award at the 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards. JAY-Z will be acknowledged for "Smile," a song and video from his 4:44 album that explores his mother Gloria Carter's experience as a lesbian.
In the song, JAY-Z raps "Mama had four kids, but she’s a lesbian/ Had to pretend so long that she’s a thespian/ Had to hide in the closet, so she medicate/ Society shame and the pain was too much to take."
Gloria Carter, who is featured on "Smile," described coming out to her son on the Dusse Friday podcast. "I just finally started telling Jay who I was. Besides your mother, this is the person that I am. This is the life that I live,” she said.
“So my son started actually tearing. He’s like, That had to be a horrible life, ma. I was like, my life was never horrible, it was just different. So that made him want to do the song."
"Smile" also describes JAY-Z's acceptance of his mother's identity: Cried tears of joy when you fell in love / Don't matter to me if it's a him or her / I just wanna see you smile through all the hate."
The 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards takes place in Beverley Hills, California on April 12 and in New York on May 5.
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