JAY-Z has released a new remix of “Empire State of Mind” with Gil Scott-Heron — check it out below.
Titled “New York (Concept de Paris),” the reworked version quietly arrived on streaming services on Sunday (April 16) and combines Hov’s 2009 hit with the late jazz singer and poet’s “New York is Killing Me.”
The song follows JAY-Z’s Celebration Concert at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris on Friday (April 14), which came in support of the Basquiat x Warhol. Painting Four Hands exhibition and was supported by Tiffany & Co.
Listen to it below:
JAY-Z’s rare show in the French capital saw him perform a career-spanning set that included “Can’t Knock the Hustle,” “Never Change,” “Heart of the City (Ain’t No Love),” “Excuse Me Miss,” “Can I Live” and “U Don’t Know,” along with the new version of “Empire State of Mind.”
During an interview with Apple Music in 2020, Alicia Keys — who sings “Empire State of Mind”‘s anthemic chorus — revealed the Blueprint 3 song almost never came out.
“For a minute, it wasn’t even going to come together,” she said. “He couldn’t find me, he couldn’t get in touch with me for whatever reason. Different people in the middle and the whole thing. So just imagine that song never happened.”
She continued: “I actually cut it in L.A. I think that was the problem. You’re not supposed to cut a song about New York in L.A. It’s just wrong. After I sent it in, he hits me back like, ‘Could you sing it again?’ So then I brought it back to New York, I cut it right, and there it is.”
AY-Z released his last album 4:44 in June 2017, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with 262,000 album-equivalent units in its first week.
His most recent verse appeared on DJ Khaled‘s “God Did” in 2022, which was nominated for Song of the Year, Best Rap Song and Best Rap Performance at the 2023 Grammy Awards.