There are some records in life that touch your soul. When Alicia Keyes and Jay Z rolled out with “Empire State of Mind,” an ode to the New York City experience, it was a both a transformational and inspirational anthem, embraced by all those whose lives are touched by the opportunity and diversity that exists in the most exciting city in the world. I’ve listened to so many versions of the song, including a beautiful acoustic version she’d done for an iHeartRadio event in New York City, which is my favorite.
I was searching for house music remixes of the song and found not only an amazing mix by Randall Jones, but a nice video tribute to New York City. The track provides the backing for a cool video collage. I especially love the break-dancing parts. I grew up on “breaking” and it brought back memories of challenging myself to learn new moves that I could show off to my friends.
Having lived in the New York City metro area for over 15-years, building a career first in Internet music and digital media, I’d gone through tumultuous times and faced incredible odds. I somehow found a way to make my mark. No matter how difficult, there was always a new place to go, new people to meet, and new things to do. New York is so big, it’s like 5 cities in one. You’re never really in the same place twice for too long. For each ride on the subway or walking across blocks brings a different experience.
The Soul Funky Mix I’ve posted is another incredible mix of this amazing song. I love this track, because it reminds me of my time spent on Friday nights at Twilo, were I’d listen to two of the world’s best producers, Sasha and John Digweed, blend a mix of trance and emerging tech house sounds. The breakdown in this mix reminds me of those last nights spent twirling amongst the glow sticks and go-go dancers.
Randall Jones Remix
Soul’s Summer Bootleg Mix