Watch the Throne
Watch the Throne
Studio album by Jay-Z and Kanye West


8 August 2011




Hip hop




Roc-A-Fella, Roc Nation, Def Jam


88-Keys, Jeff Bhasker, Mike Dean, Don Jazzy, Hit-Boy, Jay-Z (exec.), Kyambo Joshua (exec.), Om'Mas Keith, Anthony Kilhoffer, Ken Lewis, The Neptunes, Q-Tip, Gee Roberson (exec.), RZA, S1, Swizz Beatz, Kanye West (also exec.), Pharrell Williams

Jay-Z chronology


The Blueprint 3 (2009)


Magna Carta Holy Grail (2013)

Kanye West chronology


My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010)


Yeezus (2013)

Watch the Throne is a collaborative studio album by American hip hop artists Jay-Z and Kanye West, released in 2011 on Roc-A-Fella Records, Roc Nation and Def Jam Recordings. Before the album, Jay-Z and West had worked together since the early 2000s, and had established a close friendship. They originally sought out to record a five song EP together, but the project eventually evolved into a full-length album. Recording sessions began in November 2010 and took place in various countries across the globe. The album was produced by West, 88-Keys, RZA, Swizz Beatz and Mike Dean, among others.

Expanding on the dense production style of West's 2010 album My Beautiful Dark Twisted FantasyWatch the Throne incorporates orchestral and progressive rock influences, unconventional samples, and dramatic melodies in its sound. Jay-Z and West's braggadocio lyrics discuss themes of opulence, fame, materialism, power and burdens of success, as well as political and socioeconomic context. The album expresses other topics such as Jay-Z's thoughts on fatherhood, West's reflection on being deemed a social villain, and their legacy as performers.

The album produced seven singles, including the Billboard Hot 100 top five "Niggas in Paris". Jay Z and West promoted the album with the Watch the Throne Tour that spanned October 2011 to June 2012 and became the highest grossing hip hop concert in history.

Watch the Throne debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart, selling 436,000 copies in its first week. While some critics found the album's lyrical content uninspiring, its production and the rappers' performances were highly praised. Many critics and publications placed the album in their year-end best-of lists. It also earned Jay-Z and West seven Grammy Award nominations, winning Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song for "Niggas in Paris" and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for "No Church in the Wild". The album is certified platinum in the US.

Track listingEdit

No. Title Performer(s) Writer(s) Producer(s) Time
1. "No Church in the Wild" Jay-Z, Kanye West, Frank Ocean Breaux, Brown, Carter, Dean, Manzanera, Nash, Njapa, Roach, West, Wright 88-Keys, Kanye West, Mike Dean, Om'Mas Keith 4:32
2. "Lift Off" Jay-Z, Kanye West, Beyoncé Bhasker, Carter, Dean, Hernandez, Knowles, Samuel, West Kanye West, Jeff Bhasker, Mike Dean, Pharrell Williams (co.), Q-Tip (co.), Don Jazzy (add.) 4:26
3. "Niggas in Paris" Jay-Z, Kanye West Carter, Dean, Hollis, West Hit-Boy, Kanye West, Mike Dean, Anthony Kilhoffer (add.) 3:39
4. "Otis" Jay-Z, Kanye West, Otis Redding Brown, Campbell, Carter, Connelly, Hammond, Roach, Robinson, West, Woods Kanye West 2:58
5. "Gotta Have It" Jay-Z, Kanye West Brown, Carter, Pinckney, Roach, Wesley, West, Williams The Neptunes, Kanye West (co.) 2:20
6. "New Day" Jay-Z, Kanye West Bricusse, Carter, Dean, Diggs, Newley, West Kanye West, RZA, Mike Dean, Ken Lewis (add.) 4:32
7. "That's My Bitch" Jay-Z, Kanye West Bhasker, Brown, Byrd, Carter, Fareed, Lenhoff, Lordan, Vernon, West Kanye West, Q-Tip, Jeff Bhasker (co.) 3:22
8. "Welcome to the Jungle" Jay-Z, Kanye West Carter, Dean, Dean, West Swizz Beatz 2:54
9. "Who Gon Stop Me" Jay-Z, Kanye West Carter, Dean, Joseph, Kierkegaard, Simmonds, West Shama "Sak Pase" Joseph, Kanye West, Mike Dean (add.) 4:16
10. "Murder to Excellence" Jay-Z, Kanye West Carter, Dean, Griffin, Jones, Mason, Mescudi, Rosenbaum, Semenya, Summers, West Swizz Beatz, S1 5:00
11. "Made in America" Jay-Z, Kanye West, Frank Ocean Breaux, Carter, Dean, Joseph, West Shama "Sak Pase" Joseph, Om'Mas Keith, Mike Dean (add.) 4:52
12. "Why I Love You" Jay-Z, Kanye West, Mr Hudson Blanc-Francard, Camillo, Carter, Cerboneschi, Dean, Sawyer, West Mike Dean, Kanye West, Anthony Kilhoffer (add.) 3:21
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