News: Jay-Z, Alicia Keys & Rihanna Top New York Times 2009 Music List

Tuesday, Dec 22, 2009 4:40PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Grammy-winning artists Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, Rihanna and more have landed a spot on The New York Times Top 2009 Album & Song list.

In addition to the threesome, R&B veteran Maxwell was credited for having the top album of 2009.

1. Maxwell, BLACKsummers'night (Columbia) 2. Animal Collective, Merriweather Post Pavilion (Domino) 3. Green Day, 21st Century Breakdown (Reprise) 4. U2, No Line on the Horizon (Interscope) 5. Nekmo Case, Middle Cyclone (Anti-) 6. Grizzly Bear, Veckatimest (Warp) 7. Rokia Traore, Tchamantche (Nonesuch) 8. Imogen Heap, Ellipse (White Rabbit/RCA) 9. Florence and the Machine, Lungs (Universal Republic) 10. Major Lazer, Guns Don't Kill People...Lazers Do (Downtown). (New York Times)

Rihanna's "Russian Roulette" topped the best songs of 2009 chart.

Rihanna, "Russian Roulette" (Def Jam/IDJ) The Very Best, "Kamphopo" (Green Owl) Jay-Z f/Alicia Keys, "Empire State of Mind" (Roc Nation) The Dead Weather, "Treat Me Like Your Mother" (Third Man) BLK JKS, "Molalatladi" (Secretly Canadian) Annie, "I Don't Like Your Band" (Totally/Smalltown Superstar) Wild Beasts, "Hooting & Howling" (Domino) Kings of Leon, "Use Somebody" (RCA) Lady Gaga, "Paparazzi" (CherryTree/Interscope) (Hits Daily News)

"Empire State of Mind" co-writer Angela Hunte recently shared her reaction to the song's success.

"I come from the same building where he lived, and we knew each other from BK, but we never worked together. Not in a million years did I think I'd make this hit for him," says Hunte, who actually grew up at "560 State Street," the street address Jay-Z mentions on the track. "I still have no words even for the World Series performance. You get your hopes up with artists but then things happen and the record doesn't make it for whatever reason. But Jay loved the song, it made the album and it sounds crazy...[Alicia Keys] made the song sound so close to the original," says Hunte. "She just nailed it and brought it home. It was a great choice...The original is so powerful it's only a matter of time till you hear it down the line." (Billboard)

Rihanna's Rated R, which features "Russian Roulette," debuted on the charts last month.

Grammy-winning singer Rihanna's Rated R made its way to the charts this week landing a spot at No. 4 as singer Susan Boyle's I Dreamed a Dream debut pushed 700,800 records to become No. 1. According to Nielsen Soundscan, the singer's latest effort has sold 181,400 records after a week in stores. (Sales Wrap)

Check out Jay-Z and Alicia Keys performing "Empire State of Mind" together down below:

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