Rap mogul Jay-Z brought one of his memorable “Empire State of Mind” lines to life recently, returning to his “stash spot” for a special documentary taping.
According to reports, the opportunity first came about when Jay’s production team went on the prowl for a menorah (sacred candelabrum).
“Took it to my stash spot, 560 State Street,” Jay-Z raps in a memorable line from “Empire State of Mind.” Now the current resident of the Brooklyn home recounts how he met Jay-Z…and gave him a menorah. Brooklyn writer Amit Wehle shared the unbelievable story with Fuse. Jay-Z’s production team asked Wehle’s brother-in-law (a devout Jew) for a menorah (a nine-branched candelabra lit each night during Hanukkah) to commemorate Jay’s eight-day Barclays Center concert series. Hov and his crew wanted to light one candle for each night of the eight-concert run. A simple enough request, Wehle helped his brother-in-law out and received VIP concert tickets as a thank you. (Rap-Up)
This later led to Jay coming through to his old Brooklyn stomping ground.
That in and of itself would be amazing, but just days later, Wehle received another request from Hov’s camp. This time a film crew wanted to shoot footage for an upcoming Jay-Z documentary at Wehle’s apartment building, which just so happened to be Hov’s old spot at 560 State Street. Wehle recalls Jay visiting the building and touring the property. “Jay-Z knocked on the door and took the crew on a brief tour of his old place,” he said. “He pointed out where he slept, how he had the place set up with music equipment and where he worked on some of his hip-hop masterpieces in the late ’90s.” According to the building manager, the rap mogul was a good tenant. “There were never any noise issues,” he said. “He was respectful of his neighbors.” (Rap-Up)
Jay has continued to put on for his city as of late, most recently dropping a Live In Brooklyn EP to commemorate his Barclays Center run.
If you thought Jay-Z’s celebration of Brooklyn ended with his eight-show Barclays run then you don’t know Hov. On Thursday, H-O dropped Live in Brooklyn, a specially released digital EP featuring eight live songs and eight video clips from his October 6 show at the newly minted Barclays Center. “Is Brooklyn in the house?” Jay asks on the EP-opening “Empire State of Mind.” It’s impossible for any live recording to completely duplicate the concert-going experience, but the audio mix on Live In Brooklyn perfectly blends Jay’s unassisted vocals with his Roc Boys backing band, his DJ Young Guru and of course the 19,000 fans in attendance. So, when Jay-Z spits his “[If] Jeezy’s payin’ LeBron” lyric on “Empire,” the crowd’s “I’m payin’ Dwayne Wade” response comes through crisp and clear. (MTV)
Outside of the New York borough, Jigga is working on new music with producer Pharrell Williams and Odd Future affiliate Frank Ocean.
Last night (October 8), Pharrell tweeted a picture that has hip-hop fans buzzing. The Neptunes producer posted a photo of himself with Jay-Z and Frank Ocean in the studio, captioned: “Yessur, in the studio with @S_C_ and @frank_ocean.” In a subsequent tweet he said, “Can’t wait for y’all to hear what I’m working on,” referring to Hova as his “big bro” and Ocean as his “lil bro.” So, it seems the collaboration is going to be a family affair. (Exclaim)