Jay-Z is a lot of things: a rapper, a nightclub owner, a clothing designer, an author. But the one job he's most excited about? Being a hands-on father.
"Of course, of course [I'll change my baby's diapers]," the hip-hop star (real name: Shawn Carter) tells the December issue of GQ, where he is honored as one of the magazine's Men of the Year. "One hundred percent."
The 42-year-old rapper — who is currently expecting his first daughter with Beyonce Knowles, 30 — says he can already imagine driving his little girl around town in his Maybach.
"Wouldn't that be great?" Jay-Z, 42, muses. "That would be a great picture."
Being an involved parent is important to the Brooklynite, given that his own father, Adnis Reeves, abandoned him at age 11.
"If your dad died before you were born, yeah, it hurts, but it's not like you had a connection with something that was real," Jay-Z explains. "Not to say it's any better, but to have that connection and then have it ripped away was, like, the worst. My dad was such a good dad that when he left, he left a huge scar. He was my superhero."
The rapper and his father didn't reunite until 2003, when Jay-Z was 33 years old. "[I talked about] what it did to me, what it meant, asked him why. There was no real answer. There was nothing he could say, because there's no excuse for that. There really isn't," Jay-Z says. "So there was nothing he could say to satisfy me, except to hear me out. And it was up to me to forgive and let it go."
Though it was difficult to grow up without Reeves in his life, Jay-Z says it only made him more determined to become a good father to his first child with Knowles, his wife of three years.
"Providing — that's not love. Being there — that's more important," he tells GQ. "I mean, we see that. We see that with all these rich socialites. They're crying out for attention; they're hurting for love. I'm not being judgmental — I'm just making an observation. They're crying out for the love that maybe they didn't get at home, and they got everything. All the material things that they need and want. So we know that's not the key."
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