I’ve written before how songs often help us relive moments in our lives, as well as help us define how we feel about events. I find this especially true… and always have.

Therefore, when I find a blog topic eluding me, I’m going to talk about a song and what it means to me. I’m interested to hear about the songs that mean something to you. Please share.

For my first song, I’m going to start with is the one that went through my earbuds as I was mowing the yard earlier. It was quite the disastrous event, and not just because the uneven growth ended up looking horribly patchy. Each time I turned a corner of the house, Pandora switched my songs, so I resorted to the only song in our family Dropbox: “Empire State of Mind” by Jay-Z.

I don’t know many of the words. But I do know the chorus:

“In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, Let’s hear it for New York, New York.”

Yeah, I know I have New York on the brain right now. Must have something to do with being a week and three days from leaving for the big city.

New York really is an awesome city. It’s the place where dreams can come true. Many people are afraid of it. They think it’s too big, has too much crime, or too many people crowding the streets. They haven’t seen New York like I have.

New York is a bazillion different small communities existing in the same metropolis. It’s a place that glorifies the eccentric and the unique and the artistic.

It’s a place that calls to me from a deep, personal place.

Here’s the words to the song and a link to the video:

“Empire State Of Mind”
(feat. Alicia Keys)

Yeah

[Verse 1: Jay-Z]
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 with them 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 what’s up to Ty-Ty, still sippin’ mai tai’s
sittin’ courtside, Knicks & 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….

[Chorus: Alicia Keys]
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

[Verse 2: Jay-Z]
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
8 million stories, out there in it naked
City, it’s a pity, half of y’all won’t make it
Me, I got a plug, Special Ed “I Got It Made”
If Jeezy’s payin’ LeBron, I’m payin’ Dwyane Wade
Three dice cee-lo, three Card Monty
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 State that’s

[Chorus]

[Verse 3: Jay-Z]
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
Anna Wintour gets cold, in Vogue with your skin out
City of sin, it’s a pity on the wind
Good girls gone bad, the city’s filled with them
Mami 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

[Chorus]

[Bridge: Alicia Keys]
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, yeah, yeah”

[Chorus]

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“Empire State Of Mind” lyrics provided for educational purposes and personal use only.
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