Just one year after Jay-Z’s Decoded hit bookshelves, the New York Times bestselling book will be re-released on November 1. Featured in a new expanded paperback edition, the re-release will contain a new chapter, seven additional illustrations, three decoded songs: “I Know”, “Young Gz”, “Lost One” and a new afterword.
What still excites me about rap is that it’s an open thread, a cipher that listeners find their own meanings in. The point of this book is not to settle arguments or transform rap songs into neat stories with a beginning, middle, and end. Rather, I’m trying to point readers to some ideas and information, get them to see deeper into the music than they saw before and learn more about worlds different from their own (or find new ways of looking at the worlds they already know)—to find their own meanings and connect them back to their own lives. I want readers to see the craft and learn the context—and I want them to still be able to feel the magic, and enjoy the show. —JAY-Z, from the new Afterword