Did JAY-Z Misrepresent $20 Million Payment to Kanye West?

Report: The figure was actually intended to cover concert expenses.

By Hayden Wright

JAY-Z’s latest album is a treasure trove of intrigue: From the truth about his marriage to Beyonce to the friendship gone sour with Kanye West. In one of the more inflammatory moments on “Kill JAY-Z,” Jay raps about lending Yeezy a hand, professionally and financially, which ‘Ye repaid with a crazy concert rant.

“But you got hurt because you did cool by ‘Ye // You gave him 20 million without blinkin’ // He gave you 20 minutes on stage, f— was he thinkin’? // ‘F— wrong with everybody?’ is what you sayin’ // But if everybody’s crazy, you’re the one that’s insane.”

Related: Jay-Z Drops New Album ‘4:44’ with Apology to Beyoncé and Diss to Kanye

The “20 million” at issue might be a bit misleading: TMZ reports that the figure was given to cover touring expenses and other overhead related to Kanye’s Saint Pablo Tour. It’s no small amount—but it’s reportedly standard operating procedure for major performers. Production costs for the tour included a floating stage and other extravagances intended to bolster the tour, not to line Kanye’s personal bank accounts.

Speaking of money matters, Kanye reportedly pulled out of Jay’s Tidal streaming service due to a financial dispute. A TMZ report claims Tidal owes Yeezy upwards of $3 million.

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