Rap legend Jay-Z reaffirmed his title as hip-hop’s King of New York on Monday, September 13 when he rocked the new Yankee Stadium with a string of superstar guests including Kanye West, Beyonce Knowles and Chris Martin.
The “Empire State of Mind” hitmaker teamed up with Eminem to hit the stage at the home of the New York Yankees baseball team for the second leg of their Home and Home tour, which saw the hip-hop heavyweights perform in the Slim Shady star’s native Detroit, Michigan earlier this month.
Jay-Z’s protege J.Cole and rapper B.o.B opened the show before Eminem stormed the stadium running through his catalog of hits, such as “Stan” and “My Name Is”, as well as his latest chart smashes “Not Afraid” and “Love The Way You Lie” – although there was no sign of his collaborator Rihanna.
He had fans on their feet when he introduced Dr. Dre and 50 Cent to the platform, while his set also saw appearances from his D12 bandmates and B.o.B., who returned for the “Airplanes” remix. But it was Jay-Z who was celebrated as the hero on Monday, and he had his hometown crowd chanting his name moments after he stepped into the spotlight.
He launched into “Run This Town” and devotees went crazy when West joined Jay-Z for his verse on the track. The pair treated New Yorkers to two never-before-performed tunes – West’s “Power” remix and the all-star “Monster”, for which they were accompanied by Nicki Minaj.
And Jay-Z’s run of surprises didn’t stop there – Coldplay’s Martin took to the piano as they debuted another new song, titled “Most Kings”, and the rapper gave the rocker control of the microphone to belt out the British band’s hit single “Viva La Vida”. He then admitted getting Martin to the gig was a task in itself, telling the audience: “Just for you New York, just for you. You have no idea what I had to do to make that happen!”
The hip-hop king was also joined by his queen, Beyonce, who took on Mr. Hudson’s duties on the chorus of “Forever Young”, and Drake wrapped up the long list of guest appearances after performing “Miss Me” and “Light Up”.
Jay-Z took time out of his set to pay tribute to the fallen heroes of America’s 9/11 terrorist attacks, and he marked the 14th anniversary of Tupac Shakur’s death that day by saluting the late rap great, before closing his main set with a rousing rendition of “Empire State of Mind”. He then returned for another 30 minutes to perform a string of early releases, before taking his final bow.
The rap giants have one final date on their limited two-city tour – Eminem and Jay-Z will hit the stage at Yankee Stadium once again on Tuesday night, concluding their four-date trek. [via Yahoo News, Aceshowbiz and Music Mix]