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Jay Z
Jay-Z: “Hova” His friends were impressed by how spontaneously he could improvise rapid-fire rhymes—a sure sign, in their minds, that he was the Second Coming. Hence the original nickname: “J-Hova”… as in, Jehovah. “That’s what they said I had to be to do that,” the rapper/mogul told the Observer in 2003. However, he’s got 99 problems, but being a deity ain’t one, and he wanted to avoid blasphemy. “I’ve never been real comfortable being called God," he laughed. “I shorten it to Hova."

Nicknames of Grammy stars explained

February 7, 2013

You know you’re really a superstar when you pick up an extra nickname that follows you through your career even when it’s not on the album cover. From Hova to Mimi and Macca all the way back to Satchmo, here are the origins behind some of the nicknames Grammy winners have acquired over the decades. -- By Chris Willman, Yahoo! Music