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My analysis of the official video

Jay-Z Feat. Alicia Keys - Empire State Of Mind


Analysis is written by Poul Lynge Larsen. Date. 23 November 2010 to the 1 December 2010.
Table of contents.
Famous people mention in the song...............................................................................................................5

DeNiro (Robert DeNiro)...............................................................................................................5

Sinatra (Frank Sinatra).................................................................................................................5

Simmons (Russell Wendell Simmons).........................................................................................5

BK - Beyoncé Knowles (Beyoncé Giselle Knowles)....................................................................5

Biggie...........................................................................................................................................6

Ty Ty aka Tyran Smith.................................................................................................................6

OG (Juan Perez)...........................................................................................................................6

Special Ed.....................................................................................................................................6

Lebron .........................................................................................................................................6

Dwyane Wade..............................................................................................................................6

Bob Marley...................................................................................................................................6

Eve...............................................................................................................................................7

Mary.............................................................................................................................................7

Jesus.............................................................................................................................................7

New York.........................................................................................................................................................7

New York.....................................................................................................................................7

Neighbourhoods.....................................................................................................................................7

Tribeca.........................................................................................................................................7

Harlem..........................................................................................................................................8

Broadway.....................................................................................................................................8

Five Six State Street.....................................................................................................................8

8th street.......................................................................................................................................8

Bedsty (bed-stuy).........................................................................................................................8

Parades...................................................................................................................................................8

Labor day parade..........................................................................................................................8


Statues....................................................................................................................................................8

Statue Of Liberty..........................................................................................................................8

Buildings................................................................................................................................................8

Empire State Building..................................................................................................................8

Yankee stadium............................................................................................................................9

New York Police Department (N.Y.P.D.)....................................................................................9

World Trade Center......................................................................................................................9

Places......................................................................................................................................................9

New York Subway.......................................................................................................................9

My explanation of the Chorus.....................................................................................................................10

Living in New York and New York lifestyle...............................................................................................10

New York - The city of sin............................................................................................................................10

The melting pot.............................................................................................................................................10

Good thing about New York city.................................................................................................................11

Billboard........................................................................................................................................................11

Billboard I............................................................................................................................................11

Billboard Hot 100.................................................................................................................................11

Billboard II...........................................................................................................................................11

Don't bit the apple Eve.................................................................................................................................12

Personal song................................................................................................................................................12

cop in Harlem.............................................................................................................................12

Stash spot...................................................................................................................................12

BK is from Texas.......................................................................................................................12

Jay-Z's best friend.......................................................................................................................12

Typical New York.........................................................................................................................................13

My questions.................................................................................................................................................13

10 slang word................................................................................................................................................13
About this analysis........................................................................................................................................14
Famous people mention in the song.
Jay-Z Feat. Alicia Keys - Empire State Of Mind

DeNiro (Robert DeNiro)


Robert DeNiro is a top actress and have had lead roles in many movies, Heat(1995), The Fan(1996), The
Deer Hunter(1978), Casino(1995) Ronin(1998) and Men of Honor(2000), are just some of the movies he
have been in.

Sinatra (Frank Sinatra)


Frank Sinatra was a famous singer and actor. He's mostly knows for he's songs, My Way, New York,
Strangers In The Night and That's Life.

Simmons (Russell Wendell Simmons)


is an American entrepreneur, the co-founder, with Rick Rubin, of the pioneering hip-hop label Def Jam, and
creator of the clothing fashion lines Phat Farm, Argyleculture, and American Classics.

Russell Simmons is the third richest figure in hip-hop, having a net-worth estimate of $340 million.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Simmons

BK - Beyoncé Knowles (Beyoncé Giselle Knowles)


Beyoncé Knowles – is a famous singer who was the lead singer in the music pop group “Destiny’s Child”

Beyoncé Knowles released her debut solo album Dangerously in Love (2003) with number one hits Crazy in
Love and Baby Boy and the album became the most successful album of that year (2003)

Hits views from www.youtube.com date. 23.11.2010


Beyoncé - Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) 99,563,110 views
Beyoncé - Halo 75,052,803 views
Beyoncé - If I Were A Boy 65,012,990 views
Beyoncé - Diva 30,231,084 views
Beyoncé - Sweet Dreams 27,974,054 views
Beyoncé feat. Jay-Z - Crazy In Love 18,446,108 views

She have also appeared in some movies, Dreamgirls(2006), Austin Powers in Goldmember(2002),
Obsessed(2009)
Biggie
The Notorious B.I.G. (Real name: Christopher George Latore Wallace)

was know as Biggie Smalls – but on stage he was known as Notorious B.I.G. He started he's carrier by
rapping on the street as a teenager. In 1992 he released a demo tape that got heard New York-based DJ
Mister Cee, who had previously worked with Big Daddy Kane. The demo tape was heard by Uptown
Records A&R and record producer, Sean Combs (P. Diddy) who arranged for a meeting with Wallace. He
was signed to Uptown immediately and made an appearance on label mates, Heavy D & the Boyz' "A
Buncha Niggas" (from the album Blue Funk)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biggie_Smalls

Ty Ty aka Tyran Smith


best buddy of Jay-Z, of course. But the role Ty Ty plays as Hov’s real right-hand man

OG (Juan Perez)
OG in the lyrics could be a reference to the song O.G. Original Gangster by ICE-T but is not. Its a reference
to "OG" Juan Perez who has been appointed to be the president of the record label Roc-La-Familia that is
founded by Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter.

Special Ed
Is the performing name of Edward Archer (born May 16, 1973 in Brooklyn, New York), an American hip
hop musician of Jamaican descent. Hailing from Brooklyn in New York City, he is identified with East
Coast hip hop. In his own right, Special Ed is probably best known for the songs "I Got It Made" and "I'm
The Magnificent".

Lebron
LeBron Raymone James (born December 30, 1984) is an American professional basketball player for the
Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association (NBA)

Dwyane Wade
Dwyane Tyrone Wade, Jr. (born January 17, 1982) nicknamed Flash or D-Wade, is an American
professional basketball player for the Miami Heat.

Bob Marley
Robert Nesta "Bob" Marley, OM (6 February 1945 – 11 May 1981) was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and
musician. He was the rhythm guitarist and lead singer for the ska, rocksteady and reggae bands The Wailers
(1964–1974) and Bob Marley & The Wailers (1974–1981). Marley remains the most widely known and
revered performer of reggae music, and is credited with helping spread both Jamaican music and the
Rastafari movement to a worldwide audience.
Eve
Eve is the girl from the Christian history. God created a man and a women and he called them, Adam and
Eve.

Mary
The Angelic Salutation, Hail Mary, or Ave Maria (Latin) is a traditional biblical catholic prayer asking for
the intercession of the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus. The Hail Mary is used within Roman Catholicism,
and it forms the basis of the Rosary. The prayer is also used by Anglicans, the Eastern Orthodox and Oriental
Orthodox as well as by many other groups within the Catholic tradition of Christianity. Some Protestant
denominations, such as Lutherans, also make use of the prayer. Most of the text of the Hail Mary can be
found within the Gospel of Luke.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hail_Mary

Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth, commonly known as Jesus Christ or simply Jesus, is the central figure of Christianity.
Christians view him as the Messiah foretold in the Old Testament and as the Son of God, who provided
salvation and reconciliation with God to humankind by dying for their sins, then raising himself from the
dead.

New York
Which neighbourhood, statue, building, parades, and places in New York are mentioned in the song and/or
shown in the music video.

New York
New York is the most populous city in the United States, and the center of the New York metropolitan area,
which is one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. A leading global city, New York exerts a
powerful influence over global commerce, finance, media, culture, art, fashion, research, education, and
entertainment. As host of the United Nations Headquarters, it is also an important center for international
affairs. The city is often referred to as New York City or the City of New York to distinguish it from the
state of New York, of which it is a part.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City

Neighbourhoods.
Brooklyn

Tribeca
Jay and Beyoncé — also a Tribeca resident — has received credit for the neighborhood's mid-90s
revitalization. His production company is called “Tribeca Productions”
Harlem
Jay used to “cop” (buy) drugs in Harlem to sell in Brooklyn, where he lived. Reason: better prices probably
(also “imported” crack has exotic appeal)

Broadway
Broadway is a major thoroughfare of Washington Heights, the spiritual home of New York’s large
Dominican population

Five Six State Street


560 State Street is in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, a relatively tranquil neighbourhood near the site where Jay-Z
wanted to build a new arena for the New Jersey Nets

New York magazine recently interviewed long-time residents of this block to confirm that the address was in
fact Jay-Z’s stash spot when he was a dealer

8th street
8th Street in Manhattan is in the East Village near NYU (New York University)

Bedsty (bed-stuy)
Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn’s meme ghetto, was also the home of The Notorious B.I.G.

Parades

Labor day parade


There is an annual West Indian Carnival in Crown Heights, Brooklyn on Labor Day weekend that includes a
parade.

Statues

Statue Of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World [French: La Liberté éclairant le monde]) is a
colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, designed by Frédéric Bartholdi and
dedicated on October 28, 1886. The statue, a gift to the United States from the people of France, is of a robed
female figure representing Libertas, the Roman goddess of freedom, who bears a torch and a tabula ansata (a
tablet evoking the law) upon which is inscribed the date of the American Declaration of Independence. A
broken chain lies at her feet. The statue has become an iconic symbol of freedom and of the United States.

Buildings.

Empire State Building


The Empire State Building is a 102-story landmark Art Deco skyscraper in New York City. It is 1,250 ft
(381 meters) tall. Its name is derived from the nickname for New York, The Empire State.
Yankee stadium
Yankee Stadium is a stadium located in The Bronx in New York City, New York. It serves as the home
ballpark for the New York Yankees, replacing the previous Yankee Stadium, built in 1923.

New York Police Department (N.Y.P.D.)


The New York City Police Department (NYPD), established in 1845, is currently the largest municipal
police force in the United States, with primary responsibilities in law enforcement and investigation within
the five boroughs of New York City. The NYPD was the first police agency established in the United States.

World Trade Center


The World Trade Center (WTC) was a complex of seven buildings in Lower Manhattan in New York City
that were destroyed in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The site is currently being rebuilt with six
new skyscrapers and a memorial to the casualties of the attacks.

Places

New York Subway


The New York City Subway is a rapid transit system owned by the City of New York. It is one of the oldest
and most extensive public transportation systems in the world, with 468 stations in operation (423 if stations
connected by transfers are counted as a single station) 209 mi (337 km) of routes, translating into 656 miles
(1,056 km) of revenue track; and a total of 842 miles (1,355 km) including non-revenue trackage. In 2009,
the subway delivered over 1.579 billion rides, averaging over five million (5,086,833 rides) on weekdays, 2.9
million on Saturdays, and 2.2 million on Sundays.
My explanation of the Chorus.
This is the chorus that Alicia Keys are singing.

In New York,
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of,
There's nothing you can’t do,

Now you’re in New York,


These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let's hear it for New York.

“Concrete jungle where dreams are made of”


is about the tall building there are in New York City. And most of them are made of concrete. And because
the building are so tall and close packed together, it can feels like walking a jungle of concrete.

“There's nothing you can’t do”


the lyrics means that when your in New York, where are endless possibilities.

“These streets will make you feel brand new”


When you walks the street in New York its feel like your a hole new person.

“Big lights will inspire you”


the big neon light on building and on the street will inspire you to get new ideas.

Living in New York and New York lifestyle.


What do we learn about living in New York, about a New York lifestyle?

New York - The city of sin


What does it mean that New York is “the city of sin”

New York City in the late 19th Century (prostitution, brothels, gambling, police corruption, political
corruption, opium dens, organized crime)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin_City_(description)

The melting pot


what does 'welcome to the melting pot mean'

“The melting pot” is a common metaphor for American immigration, which is often associated with Ellis
Island (which is actually part of Jersey City, not New York City itself, but whatever)

http://rapgenius.com/lyrics/Jay-z/Empire-state-of-mind
Good thing about New York city
What good thing are said about the city?

If you lived a drug life like Jay-Z did (before he made music) you can get from the bottom to the top. Alicia
is singing that when you walk in New York city, you get inspiration from the light on building and on the
streets.

Billboard
What does it mean: 'now I live on the a billboard?'

Billboard I
Billboard charts, actual billboards. Jay-Z is famous! (and as a result, so are some his friends)
http://rapgenius.com/lyrics/Jay-z/Empire-state-of-mind

Billboard Hot 100


he Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by
Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on
Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday to Tuesday. A new
chart is compiled and officially released to the public by Billboard on Thursday. Each chart is dated with the
"week-ending" date of the Saturday two weeks after. Example:

• Monday, January 1 – sales tracking-week begins.

• Wednesday, January 3 – airplay tracking-week begins

• Sunday, January 7 – sales tracking-week ends

• Tuesday, January 9 – airplay tracking-week ends

• Thursday, January 11 – new chart released, with issue date of Saturday, January 20.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billboard_Hot_100

Billboard II
A billboard (archaically a "hoarding" in the UK) is a large outdoor advertising structure (a billing board),
typically found in high traffic areas such as alongside busy roads. Billboards present large advertisements to
passing pedestrians and drivers. Typically showing large, ostensibly witty slogans, and distinctive visuals,
billboards are highly visible in the top designated market areas

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billboard
Don't bit the apple Eve
In the sentence '...dont bite the apple Eve' what is Jay-Z referring to?

In the Bible, the “apple” represented temptation, drawing Eve to sin. Similarly, the “Big Apple” (New York)
turns perfectly nice young ladies into materialistic bitches.

http://rapgenius.com/lyrics/Jay-z/Empire-state-of-mind

Personal song
What personal stuff does Jay-Z tell in the song?

cop in Harlem
From the lyrics: I used to cop in Harlem

Jay used to “cop” (buy) drugs in Harlem to sell in Brooklyn, where he lived. Reason: better prices probably
(also “imported” crack has exotic appeal)

Stash spot
From the lyrics: Took it to my stash spot 560 State street

New York magazine recently (9.16.2009) interviewed long time residents of this block (560 State street) to
confirm that the address was in fact Jay-Z’s stash spot when he was a dealer.

BK is from Texas
From the lyrics: Driving so slow but BK is from Texas

He’s driving with Beyonce (Knowles), who is from Houston, Texas. Beyonce Knowles is Jay-Z former
girlfriend.

Jay-Z's best friend


From the lyrics: Say what up to Ty Ty, still sipping mai tais.

Jay has been sipping mai tais with Ty Ty (his real life best friend Tyran Smith) ever since Jay-Z's album
Dead Presidents II from 1996. and now we have year 2010 so Jay-Z and Ty Ty hav been friends for more
than 16 years.
Typical New York.
What typical New York thing are mentioned in the song?

Yankee stadium, Statue of Liberty, Broadway, McDonalds, 8th street (NYU)

My questions
Make up 3 of your own questions to the dong? - where the answers are in the song text.

Where is BK (Beyoncé Knowles) from?

What is the street name of Jay-Z's stash spot?

What hat did hey made more famous then a Yankee can?

10 slang word
find at least 10 slang word or slang expressions that are used in the song

1. Hood

2. cop in Harlem

3. my stash spot

4. Bed-Stuy (bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn’s meme ghetto)

5. X – the bronx

6. Mommy took a bus trip and now she got her bust out. Everybody ride her, just like a bus
route.
A very lyrical way of telling an age-old story: girl came to the city and had no money (“bust out”) so
she became a prostitute (her breasts are now “bust[ing] out”) who everybody “rides”

7. Cruising down 8th street.


Not sure what Jay’s up to here other than driving around marvelling at younger girls; 8th Street in
Manhattan is in the East Village near NYU

8. Nigga

9. gotta

10. MDMA
“MDMA” = 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (aka Ecstasy, the “party drug”)
About this analysis
This analysis is made by Poul Lynge Larsen as a School assignment from VUC Lyngby in Denmark.

Date. 1 December 2010

Reference list.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Simmons

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biggie_Smalls

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hail_Mary

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin_City_(description)

http://rapgenius.com/lyrics/Jay-z/Empire-state-of-mind

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billboard_Hot_100

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billboard