Jay-Z launched Life + Times – a new lifestyle website showcasing the rapper's taste in high-end cars, clothes and gadgets – yesterday. It's not far off from his friend Gwyneth Paltrow's GOOP newsletter, but with an aesthetic more keyed into the interests of ambitious and upwardly mobile young men – fashion and design posts are mixed in with items about sports and music.
This is a good call. Whereas Paltrow's site is routinely mocked for being out of touch with the reality of women who aren't fabulously wealthy, Life + Times makes a point of keeping things at least somewhat down to earth despite all the expensive stuff that is getting Hov's seal of approval.
Life + Times is only the latest part of Jay-Z's business empire, which includes stakes in the 40/40 Club chain, the New Jersey Nets basketball franchise, Rocawear and the Roc Nation label. Though the site is not likely to become a major revenue source for the rapper, it is a potentially major step toward expanding upon his established "brand" and moving him toward an Oprah-like level of cultural influence.