Empire State Of Mind chords by Alicia Keys & JAY-Z


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Empire State Of Mind | Chords + Lyrics (no capo)


Intro

||: F# | F# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 :||
Oh, New York. Oh, New York.

Verse 1

||: F# | F# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 :||
Grew up in a town that is famous as a place of movie scenes.
Noise is always loud, there are sirens all around and the streets are mean.
If I can make it here, I can make it anywhere, that’s what they say.
Seeing my face in lights or my name in marquees found down on Broadway.
| A# | A# |
Even if it ain’t all it seems, I got a pocketful of dreams, baby, I’m from,

Chorus 1

| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# |
New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in,
| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 |
New York, these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York, New York, New York.

Verse 2

||: F# | F# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 :||
On the avenue, there ain’t ever a curfew, ladies work so hard.
Such a melting pot, on the corner selling rock, preachers pray to God.
Hail a gypsy cab, takes me down from Harlem to the Brooklyn bridge.
Someone sleeps tonight with a hunger far more than an empty fridge.
| A# | A# |
I’m gonna make it by any means, I got a pocketful of dreams, baby, I’m from,

Chorus 2

| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# |
New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in,
| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 |
New York, these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York, New York, New York.

Middle 8

| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 |
One hand in the air for the big city. Street lights, big dreams, all looking pretty.
| C#no3 | D#m | A# | A# |
No place in the world that can compare, put your lighters in the air, everybody say, yeah, yeah! Yeah, yeah!

Chorus 3

| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# |
In New York, Concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in New York.
| Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# | C# | Bmaj7 | Bmaj7 | F# |
These streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York.



Empire State Of Mind | Chords + Lyrics (capo 2)


Intro

||: E | E | Amaj7 | Amaj7 :||
Oh, New York. Oh, New York.

Verse 1

||: E | E | Amaj7 | Amaj7 :||
Grew up in a town that is famous as a place of movie scenes.
Noise is always loud, there are sirens all around and the streets are mean.
If I can make it here, I can make it anywhere, that’s what they say.
Seeing my face in lights or my name in marquees found down on Broadway.
| G# | G# |
Even if it ain’t all it seems, I got a pocketful of dreams, baby, I’m from,

Chorus 1

| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B |
New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in,
| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B | Amaj7 | Amaj7 |
New York, these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York, New York, New York.

Verse 2

||: E | E | Amaj7 | Amaj7 :||
On the avenue, there ain’t ever a curfew, ladies work so hard.
Such a melting pot, on the corner selling rock, preachers pray to God.
Hail a gypsy cab, takes me down from Harlem to the Brooklyn bridge.
Someone sleeps tonight with a hunger far more than an empty fridge.
| G# | G# |
I’m gonna make it by any means, I got a pocketful of dreams, baby, I’m from,

Chorus 2

| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B |
New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in,
| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B | Amaj7 | Amaj7 |
New York, these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York, New York, New York.

Middle 8

| Amaj7 | Amaj7 |
One hand in the air for the big city. Street lights, big dreams, all looking pretty.
| Bno3 | C#m | G# | G# |
No place in the world that can compare, put your lighters in the air, everybody say: Yeah, yeah! Yeah, yeah!

Chorus 3

| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B |
In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in New York.
| Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E | B | Amaj7 | Amaj7 | E |
These streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you, hear it for New York.



Empire State Of Mind Chords: Learn the progressions


Empire State Of Mind Guitar Lesson + TAB T

Originally performed on the piano in the key of F#, I’ve adapted Empire State Of Mind’s chords to work on the guitar by adding a capo to fret two and thinking of this as if in the key of E.

It’s a great lesson in itself to take a song, originally performed on a different instrument and build your own arrangement.

The verse/bridge uses chords I, IV, and IIIx, like this:

||: E (I) | E | Amaj7 (IV) | Amaj7 :||
| G# (IIIx) | G# |

Let’s take a look at some TAB that shows how you could play this tune on just one acoustic guitar.

Empire State Of Mind chords and TAB, intro and verse.

The chorus starts on chord IV, goes back to chord I, and finishes on chord V, like this:

||: Amaj7 (IV) | Amaj7 | E (I) | B5 (V) :|| x2
| Amaj7 | Amaj7 |

Empire State Of Mind’s middle 8 section (some people prefer to call it a bridge) introduces chord VI (a C#m), like this:

| Amaj7 (IV) | Amaj7 | B5 (V) |
| C#m (VI) | G# (IIIx) | G# |

The outro is the same as a chorus although I’ve changed the extensions here using add9 and add4, like this:

||: Aadd9 (IV) | Aadd9 | E (I) | Badd4 (V) :|| x2
| Aadd9 | Aadd9 | E |

As several of Empire State Of Mind’s chords have been extended, let’s look at these one by one in a bit more detail:

  • Amaj7 – This chord is created by adding a maj7th interval to an A major triad.
  • B5 – This chord only has roots and 5ths inside it, it is neither major nor minor.
  • Aadd9 – This chord is created by adding a 9th interval (a B) to a normal A major triad.
  • Badd11 – This chord is created by adding an 11th interval (an E) to a normal B major triad.

Members get TAB for how to play all sections, here’s a link to the complete lesson: Empire State Of Mind – Guitar Lesson with TAB.

Become a member today and get unlimited access to all step-by-step guitar coursesTAB for the songbook, the Self-Eliminating Practice Routine, and the eBook Spytunes Method.

Empire State Of Mind wasn’t supposed to be a single for Alicia!

Cowritten with Jay-Z, Empire State Of Mind was supposed to be his tune, featuring Alicia Keys.

As the single dropped, Keys announced that there would soon be a “broken down version” with mainly her singing on her next studio album The Element Of Freedom (2009).

The initial version had Jay-Z rapping for one verse but this was scrapped with having only Alicia singing.

At firs, it was not even released as a single, the new version, dubbed Empire State of Mind (Part II) Broken Down sold so many digital copies the label decided it had to be a single in the U.K.

From this point, the success of Empire State Of Mind bloomed as it charted in over 16 territories.

On various gigs, Alicia can be heard changing the lyrics to whatever city or region she’s performing in, for example, North Wales which is as far from New York as you can get.



Empire State Of Mind Chords | Related Pages


Intermediate Acoustic

There are many more Intermediate Acoustic Songs with chords similar to Empire State Of Mind.

Most intermediate acoustic tunes can’t be played using just basic open-position chords. We have to move up the fretboard and play CAGED barre chords as well.

We incorporate bass lines, add licks, extend chords, and play vocal melodies. Most importantly, we’ll invent second guitar parts and play these songs together.


Five similar tunes with chords and lyrics

When you can play Empire State Of Mind's chords, try these five tunes from the songbook.

Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys wrote Empire State Of Mind with Jay-Z.

Alicia Keys had instant success with her debut album Songs In Am, mainly down to its single Fallin’.

Following this, she has firmly established herself with hits such as If I Ain’t Got You, This Girl Is On Fire, and Empire State Of Mind.


Alicia Keys on the web

Listen to Alicia Keys on Spotify.


Pop & Rock

When you can play, Empire State Of Mind. Check out these Pop & Rock tunes as well.

Whenever a tune doesn’t fit into a specific genre, it tends to end up here, in the Pop & Rock section.

Learn tunes from Tom Petty, Eagles, Toto, Oasis, Elvis, Clapton, John Mayer, Kings Of Leon, R.E.M., Radiohead, Bruno Mars, and more.


About me

Dan Lundholm wrote this article about Empire State Of Mind's chords.

This article on Empire State Of Mind’s chords was written by Dan Lundholm. Discover more about him and how learning guitar with Spytunes has evolved.

Most importantly, find out why you should learn guitar through playing tunes, not practising scales, and studying theory in isolation.


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