|Single by Jay-Z|
|from the album The Blueprint|
|Released||August 21, 2001|
|Genre||East Coast hip hop|
|Jay-Z singles chronology|
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"Izzo (H.O.V.A.)" (often referred to as "H to the Izzo") is the first single released by Jay-Z from his sixth album The Blueprint. It is among his most popular singles. This was the second song released off The Blueprint, after the diss track "Takeover", but the lead single from it. The song reached #8 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. It was Jay-Z's first top 10 single as a lead artist.
The music video takes place in New York City with Jay-Z, Damon Dash, Biggs, & other affiliates on a Roc-A-Fella parade float which features cameo appearances from Kanye West, Destiny's Child, Trina, Eve, Nelly, and OutKast.
The first verse deals with the rapper's early career as a drug dealer, including his escape from conviction. The second verse narrates his struggles with the exploitative recording industry, while in the last verse he reverts to his childhood growing up in the Marcy Houses housing projects.
The song's lyrics "H to the izz-O, V to the izz-A" use the -izzle language code to spell out HOVA, which refers to a pseudonym given to himself ("Jayhova") for his self-proclaimed status as the god of MCs, a reference to Jehovah.
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||8|
|U.S. Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks||4|
|U.S. Billboard Rap Singles||7|
|Dutch Singles Chart||69|
|Swiss Singles Chart||3|
|UK Singles Chart||21|