Call me Hov or Jefe
HOV is one of Jay’s many nicknames, derived from the latinization of the Hebraic name for God, Jehovah, used by Jay-Z to imply he’s the God of the rap game.
Jefe is Spanish for “boss,” which Jay-Z most certainly is figuratively and literally.
This also continues the Latin influence in this verse and he begins the next line with a translation.
Could Jay also be a guerrilla? More than just a continuation of Latin influence, the use of the term “Jefe” might be a nod to former Cuban president Fidel Castro, whose nickname is El Jefe. Hov first shouted out Fidel on “Otis” when he said, “Welcome to Havana/smoking cubanos with Castro in cabanas.” The line is consistent with Jay’s regard for Latin revolutionaries generally, as he first displayed on “Public Service Announcement” with the line, “I’m like Che Guevara with bling on: I’m complex.”
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