Grammy-nominated rapper Nas recently talked about the success of Jay-Z‘s 2009 hit, “Empire State of Mind,” and what it represented for New York.
From Nas’ perspective, Jay has helped shine more light on the Big Apple.
“It’s just keeping that whole thing alive — this New York thing,” Nas said in an interview. “There are a lot of people complaining about New York hip-hop, about it not being what it was, and he stood up and now we have another anthem to be proud of…I think [Jay-Z] pretty much handled it. Of course, I’m always gonna talk about New York — it’s the greatest city in the world. But I’m not in the studio making a New York record now to one up anybody, no.” (Wall Street Journal)
Former Roc-A-Fella artist Beanie Sigel previously said Nas would be on Jay’s “Empire” remix.
“I’m nice at chess too,” Sigel told radio personality DJ On & On. “They say he got a record supposed to come out, the remix to the New York sh*t, he’s poppin’ shots at me, poppin’ shots at 50 but he pulled Nas on the record hoping that a n*gga will respond to it and come at Nas and Nas is gonna come right back, he ain’t gonna hold no punches, he’s gonna come right back. He should come right back but look at the moves. I see that. I’m not worried about Nas, I did that already. I did that already. In defense of him I did that already. I was there when dude was in the studio on the couch scratching his head under pressure.” (Jump The Turn Style)
Last January, West Coast rapper Game tweeted about the song’s impact in California.
“How come Power 106 plays ‘Empire State Of Mind’ more than New York ?,” Game asked via Twitter. “If I hear it 1 more time b4 I get home, I’m startin a full fledge protest (picket signs) & Im gettin dem women dat R against abortion 2 help They go HARD !!! & when I was in NEW YORK, aint hear “Empire State Of Mind” once… they only played ATL sh!t……… #whatsgoinon ?” (Game’s Twitter)
The hit record landed atop Billboard’s Hot 100 last year.
Jay-Z will earn his fourth Hot 100 No. 1, but his first as a lead or co-billed performer, as his collaboration with Alicia Keys, “Empire State of Mind,” will top the chart to be released tomorrow. “Empire” takes Hot 100 Airplay Gainer honors as it rises 6-1 on the Radio Songs chart (up 15 million listener impressions to 109.5 million), the largest climb to No. 1 on that chart since Kanye West‘s “Stronger” jumped 7-1 on the chart dated Oct. 6, 2007. (Hot 100 Charts)
Check out Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind” music video below: