Jay-Z on Mom Gloria Carter Coming Out: "I Cried Because I Was So Happy"

Jay-Z couldn't be prouder of his mother, Gloria Carter. In a preview for the Friday episode of Netflix's My Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman, the musician reflects back on his mom's decision to come out as gay later in life.  

"Imagine having lived your life for someone else. And you think you're protecting your kids," Jay-Z tells Letterman in the clip. "And for my mother to have to live as someone that she wasn't and hide and, like, protect her kids — and didn't want to embarrass her kids, and you know, for all this time."

The hip-hop icon goes on to say that he was unable to hold back tears as Carter finally spoke to him in detail about her attraction to another woman. "For her to sit in front of me and tell me, 'I think I love someone,' I mean, I really cried. That's a real story," he continues. "I cried because I was so happy for her that she was free."

He also says the conversation happened eight months ago and inspired his decision to include Carter on his song "Smile," from his 13th studio album, 4:44: "I made the song the next day."

On the latter half of the track, Carter recites a poem that asks: “Living in the shadow / Can you imagine what kind of life it is to live?”

In the sneak peek, Jay-Z tells Letterman that, even after so many years, Carter was still hesitant about admitting her love for another woman. "This was the first time we had the conversation," he reveals. "And the first time I heard her say she loved her partner. Like, 'I feel like I love somebody.' She said, 'I feel like.' She held that little bit back, still."

He adds, "She didn't say. 'I'm in love.' She said, 'I feel like I love someone.' And I just, I cried. I don't even believe in crying because you're happy. I don't even know what that is. What is that?"

Jay-Z's episode of My Guest Needs No Introduction begins streaming globally Friday on Netflix. He joins a list of guests for Letterman's six-episode monthly talk show that includes Barack Obama, Tina Fey, Howard Stern, George Clooney and Malala Yousafzai.

Watch the clip above.