In a world where celebrity infidelity is the norm, Jay-Z and Beyoncé are known for their rock-steady relationship. So when rumors in 2005 were spread about an affair between Jay-Z and then hot new singer Rihanna, nobody was more surprised than Jay-Z. Due to the controversy, 17 year old Rihanna’s album earned stellar sales, and Jay-Z and Beyoncé actually split up for a year, all thanks to the lie started by Rihanna’s publicist Jonathan Hay. So how did a 2005 rumor start making headlines in 2015?
The recently published unauthorized biography, Becoming Beyoncé actually details the process Hay used to spread this celebrity lie heard ‘round the world, and the timing couldn’t be worse for him. It seems Hay has a habit of earning success off of the backs of Jay-Z and Rihanna, as he recently launched an album entitled “When Music Worlds Collide”… on Jay-Z and Beyoncé’s platform Tidal. Not only has the album taken off, it has helped Hay’s new label Urban Hitchcock gain notoriety, and Hay has already indicated all music produced by his label will be made available exclusively through Tidal.
Or perhaps not. As the now very apologetic Jonathan Hay has expressed, “I was blindsided by the news of ‘Becoming Beyoncé’ coming out and it couldn’t come at a worse time for me. I’m currently releasing projects with my label Urban Hitchcock through Tidal, a company owned by Jay-Z and Beyoncé… Hopefully, this news hasn’t ruined that relationship for me.”
While the successful couple has yet to make a public statement, Jonathan Hay has been taking advantage of their silence as he scrambles to clear the air. Citing desperation for a hit record, he has apologized repeatedly, and even alluding to the fact he had revealed the lie for what it was seven or eight years ago. He has even Tweeted an email address and phone number to reach out to people and kill the gossip, and likely save his burgeoning label.
It is entirely possible that Jonathan Hay’s remorse is sincere, but whether or not it is, fans of Jay-Z and Beyoncé can remain confident that for them, this controversy will only increase their success. Time and time again Jay-Z and Beyoncé have turned controversies such as the Solange attack on Jay-Z into promotions for their various enterprises.
So whether the couple crushes his label by blacklisting him from Tidal, or thank him for the increased awareness, this controversy brings to their platform is something only time can tell.