It’s been just over a month since Jay-Z’s 4:44 album landed. Special attention has been paid across the board to the title track, thanks to the fact that it’s a painfully raw apology to Beyoncé for basically everything we heard about on Lemonade. Pay close attention to the lyrics if you want an unflinching look at the weight that comes with deep remorse, regret, and guilt.

Jay told XXL that the track is “the crux of the album, just right in the middle of the album. And I woke up, literally, at 4:44 in the morning, 4:44 AM, to write this song. So it became the title of the album and everything. It’s the title track because it’s such a powerful song, and I just believe one of the best songs I’ve ever written.”

So that’s that, right? We’ve got the song, an amazing video, a response to Lemonade, and an explanation about the title. Done! The End. Only not, because in the age of the internet, this just has to be about a bunch of other stuff too.

Before the album was even released, Twitter was already throwing out theories:

After the release, one of the first groups to jump in with some extra analysis were numerologists. You can’t blame them really — according to, seeing the number sequence 444 or 4444 repeatedly is a “Cosmic ‘No!'” that “indicates a ‘No’ to absolutely anything” the person seeing it is thinking about at that time. Imagine using number sequences to make decisions every day, then having one of the biggest artists in the world name his album after the sequence that means “No.” You can guarantee that any promotional material for this particular Jay-Z record is wreaking havoc for this particular school of numerologists.

Felicia Bender, “The Practical Numerologist,” has a more positive spin: “There are obvious connections, like Beyoncé’s birthday is on the 4th, his mother’s birthday is on the 4th, his own birthday on the 4th, and he and Beyoncé got married on the 4th.” She continues: “The number 4 carries the energy of structure… The 4 is all about hard work, process, stability, and a certain level of security. Its power resides in envisioning something and creating it from nothing… Where others give up or want the easy way out, the 4 stays late and comes to work early, if you know what I mean.”

And if you think the numerologists sound crazy, just wait until you hear what the illuminati conspiracy theorists had to say on Twitter:

Then there was this tweet, in reference to Jay-Z’s 1996 track “22 Twos”:

Thank you, interwebs, for somehow transporting us from the time on a clock in Jay-Z’s bedroom to ACTUAL SATAN.

Back on Planet Earth (specifically the Meatpacking District of Manhattan), some other folks just noticed that 444 just might have a link to the address of the Standard Hotel. This is significant, since that’s where Solange Knowles physically attacked her brother-in-law in an elevator.

A quick Google search reveals that The Standard’s actual address is 848 Washington St. Though if we’re clutching at straws, The Shop at The Standard, as well as the hotel’s rooftop bar, Le Bain, is, in fact listed as 444 W. 13th Street. (Wait… 13? Does Taylor Swift have something to do with this too?!)

Let’s face it, not even Beyoncé directly referencing these kinds of conspiracy theories on her track, “Formation” (“Ya’ll haters corny with that Illuminati mess”) could shut them down. And thank goodness for that — this is altogether far too much fun.

The Illuminati, Satan, and Numerology: Conspiracy Theories about Jay-Z’s 4:44 Are Everywhere 31 July,2017Rae Alexandra

  • Michael Brill

    I have been a professional numerologist since 1985 and the author of four books. Jay Z’s birthday is December 4. Adding the month and day of birth together 12+4 = 16 1+6=7 Written as 16/7 identifies his core issues and potential strengths. The number 16/7 is called a Karmic Number because it brings lessons that teach us to let go of control and the need to always be right. Lacking self-esteem (1) initiates unrealistic expectations and issues with responsibility (6), leading to a need for control to avoid embarrassment or abandonment (7). Keying off of the m/d of birth double-digit 16 reduced to a 7 would indicate the probability that the numbers 444 relate to the following actions: 4 (let go of control) 4 (stop procrastinating, pay attention to details, a need for order and structure) and the final 4 (make it happen!). The total of 444 = 12 1+2=3 further indicates the underlying issues are 1 (self-esteem), 2 (Interactions with others, timely communication, and letting go of emotional and sentimental attachments). The 3 total implies a need to overcome feelings of inadequacy and a need for more emotional intimacy).


Rae Alexandra

Rae Alexandra is On Call Producer for KQED Pop. Born and raised in Wales, she started her career writing for Britain’s biggest music magazines. After moving to California, she became a regular contributor to both SF Weekly and New York’s Village Voice. She regularly ruins your favorite ‘80s movies at, and can be found on Twitter @raemondjjjj.

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