Empire State of Mind

Album: The Blueprint 3 (2009)
Charted: 2 1
  • Yea, yea I'm out that Brooklyn, now I'm down in Tribeca
    Right next to DeNiro, but I'll be hood forever
    I'm the new Sinatra, and, since I made it here
    I can make it anywhere, yea, they love me everywhere I used to cop in Harlem,
    All of my Dominicano's right there up on Broadway,
    Pull me back to that McDonald's, took it to my stashbox, 560 State St.
    Catch me in the kitchen like a Simmons wippin' pastry's
    Cruisin' down 8th St., off white Lexus
    Drivin' so slow, but BK is from Texas
    Me, I'm out that Bed-Stuy, home of that boy Biggie
    Now I live on Billboard and I brought my boys with me
    Say whattup to Ty-Ty, still sippin' Mai Tai's
    Sittin' courtside, Knicks and Nets give me high five
    Nigga I be Spike'd out, I could trip a referee
    Tell by my attitude that I'm most definitely from

    In New York,
    Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
    There's nothin' 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, New York, New York

    Catch me at the X with OG at a Yankee game
    Shit, I made the Yankee hat more famous then a Yankee can
    You should know I bleed blue, but I ain't a Crip though
    But I got a gang of niggas walkin' with my clique though
    Welcome to the melting pot, corners where we sellin' rock
    Afrika Bambataa shit, home of the hip-hop
    Yellow cab, gypsy cab, dollar cab, holla back
    For foreigners it ain't for, they act like they forgot how to act
    Eight million stories, out there in it naked
    City is a pity, half of y'all won't make it
    Me, I got a plug, Special Ed "I Got It Made"
    If Jesus payin' Lebron, I'm payin' Dwyane Wade
    Three dice cee-lo, three card monte
    Labor Day Parade, rest in peace Bob Marley
    Statue of Liberty, long live the World Trade
    Long live the King yo, I'm from the Empire St. that's

    In New York,
    Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
    There's nothin' 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, New York, New York

    Lights is blinding, girls need blinders
    So they can step out of bounds quick, the sidelines is
    Lined with casualties, who sip to life casually
    Then gradually become worse, don't bite the apple, Eve
    Caught up in the in-crowd, now you're in style
    End of the winter gets cold, en vogue, with your skin out
    City of sin, it's a pity on the whim
    Good girls gone bad, the city's filled with them
    Mommy took a bus trip, now she got her bust out
    Everybody ride her, just like a bus route
    Hail Mary to the city, you're a virgin
    And Jesus can't save you, life starts when the church end
    Came here for school, graduated to the high life
    Ball players, rap stars, addicted to the limelight
    MDMA got you feelin' like a champion
    The city never sleeps, better slip you an Ambien

    In New York,
    Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
    There's nothin' 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, New York, New York

    One hand in the air for the big city
    Street lights, big dreams, all lookin' pretty
    No place in the world that could compare
    Put your lighters in the air everybody say yeah, yeah,
    Yea, yea

    In New York,
    Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
    There's nothin' 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, New York, New York Writer/s: Alexander William Shuckburgh, Alicia J Augello-Cook, Shawn C Carter, Angela Hunte, Bert Keyes, Sylvia Robinson, Janette Sewell
    Publisher: Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner Chappell Music, Inc., Global Talent Publishing, Universal Music Publishing Group
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 13

  • Emily from TorontoHey, I need help with some band homework, anyone know all of the different instruments that are used in this song. Also what key is it in and what key signature? Thanks
  • Alikiriza from KampalaThe first time I heard of this song felt like if the word New York wasn't there could trip jay to fix in my home town. My heart felt it that much more so where keys says it's not all that for only new Yorkers . It's a life time song where jay perfectly breaks all raps in simultaneous way. I enjoy it every time I listen to it.
  • Chris from Norman, OkRipping off Billy Joel? Give me a break. I love Billy Joel more than Zay-Z but that is ridiculous. I think even Joel would give props to Jay-Z for this artistic release.
  • Zezin from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil"if Jeezy's payin' Lebron, I'm payin' Dwyane Wade". In Young Jeezy's song "24-23 (Kobe-Lebron)," Jeezy uses the players' jersey numbers to articulate the price he's paying of a kilogram of cocaine.

    The chorus of that song goes, "I used to pay Kobe [24], but now I pay LeBron [23]." This means that he used to pay $24,000 for a kilo of coke, whereas now? He only pays $23,000, you see.

    So. In "Empire," Jay-Z takes this one step further, so as to show his impressive status in New York. He suggests that, while Jeezy may be paying $23,000, Jay-Z is paying a mere $3000 (expressed as Dwyane Wade's jersey number) for a kilo of cocaine.
  • Alberto from Roma, ItalyNew York... "These streets will make you feel brand new,
    the lights will inspire you"... check "Fairytale of New York" by The Pogues on this website, and then let's talk about it.
  • Barry from New York, NcWhy is JZ ripping off Billy Joel? How shameless can you get. Pathetic.
  • James from Scotch Plains, Njjust like "everything is gonna be allright" to the Caribean (hope I spelled it right) this is to the city.
  • Brad from A City, KyYes, because a few months is "old" now. This generation of music is simply pathetic. And one of the few decent songs out of it, even though it's still top 10, is now considered old. People today in this country are just SO intelligent.
  • Lacey from Chicago, Ili likes this song:)
    but now its olddd
  • Lisa from Eveleth, MnLOVE THIS SONG!! i dont really care for rap, but alicia keys is sweet
  • Emma from Adelaide, Australiathis song is great as indigo said, this is not really my type of music, but the lyrics and feel of this song ar AHMAZING
  • Indigo from Adelaide, Australia(to add to previous comment, wasn't finished typing)Jay Z's verses are flawless and Alicia Keys vocals are beautiful. "cocnrete jungle where dreams are made of" they love their hometown!
  • Indigo from Adelaide, Australiayay. first comment. i don't usually like this kind of music, but this song is cool. i hope it doesn't get overplayed.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Carol KayeSongwriter Interviews

A top session musician, Carol played on hundreds of hits by The Beach Boys, The Monkees, Frank Sinatra and many others.

Dick Wagner (Alice Cooper/Lou Reed)Songwriter Interviews

The co-writer/guitarist on many Alice Cooper hits, Dick was also Lou Reed's axeman on the Rock n' Roll Animal album.

Lace the Music: How LSD Changed Popular MusicSong Writing

Starting in Virginia City, Nevada and rippling out to the Haight-Ashbury, LSD reshaped popular music.

Early Days of MTVFact or Fiction

If you can recall the days when MTV played videos, you know that there are lots of stories to tell. See if you can spot the real ones.

MetallicaFact or Fiction

Beef with Bon Jovi? An unfortunate Spandex period? See if you can spot the true stories in this Metallica version of Fact or Fiction.

Justin TimberlakeFact or Fiction

Was Justin the first to be Punk'd by Ashton Kutcher? Did Britney really blame him for her meltdown? Did his bandmates think he was gay?