Jay-Z has shared a new remix of his 2009 track ‘Empire State Of Mind’ featuring Gil Scott-Heron, and debuted it at his first live performance in four years.
The rapper unveiled the remix at an event sponsored by the Louis Vuitton Foundation and Tiffany & Co in Paris on Friday (April 14). It was his first onstage appearance since 2019.
‘New York (Concept De Paris)’ sees Jay-Z take his hit single ‘Empire State Of Mind’ and mash it up with Gil Scott-Heron’s ‘New York Is Killing Me’.
It takes verses from the original track and combines them with the latter’s 2011 cult favourite, creating a new homage to the American city. Check it out below, alongside the two original tracks.
The performance was held to mark the opening of a new exhibition – Basquiat X Warhol. Painting Four Hands – which celebrates both neo-expressionist artist Jean-Michel Basquiat and pop art pioneer Andy Warhol.
‘New York Is Killing Me’ is taken from Scott-Heron’s celebrated 2011 album, ‘I’m New Here’, which was his last LP. Shortly after its release, the poet and jazz Musician – who is considered a forerunner of hip-hop – died following a trip to Europe. He was aged 62.
Although Jay-Z has taken a break from performing in recent years, the 53-year-old rapper has had some recent activity in the last few months.
Before his set in Paris last week, the rapper also appeared at the 2023 Grammys, which took place in February. Here, he performed his verse from DJ Khaled’s 2022 track ‘God Did’.
In other news, earlier this month it was announced that Jay-Z is the last rapper remaining on Forbes’ list of billionaires. Released on April 4, the rapper’s net worth was reported as increasing from $1.5billion (£1.2billion) to $2billion (£1.6billion). Kanye West was also revealed as having dropped off the list, following his departure from Adidas.
Elsewhere, Ed Sheeran also shared that Jay-Z “respectfully passed” on featuring on the hit single ‘Shape Of You’.
“We were in touch,” Sheeran said to Rolling Stone. “I sent him the song, and he said, ‘I don’t think the song needs a rap verse.’ He was probably right. He’s got a very, very good ear. He usually gets things right. It was a very natural, respectful pass.”