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What Song Was the Wake-Up Call for the Space Shuttle Atlantis Today? Empire State of Mind

Tue May 25 2010 8:42 am
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Atlantis’ homeward-bound astronauts paid tribute Tuesday morning to their space shuttle, nearing the end of its final journey after a quarter-century of spaceflight. Commander Kenneth Ham noted that Atlantis has spent nearly 300 days in orbit over 32 missions, and traveled 120 million miles. The commander and his crew took along a small U.S. flag that flew on Atlantis’ first flight.

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“Empire State of Mind” was the wake up song for the crew of the Atlantis Space Shuttle crew on Tuesday, May 25, 2010.

“Empire State of Mind” is a song by American rapper and hip hop artist Jay-Z, featuring vocals from R&B and soul singer Alicia Keys. It was released as the third single from Jay-Z’s 11th studio album The Blueprint 3 (2009), from his Roc Nation label in October 2009. The song is an anthemic ode to both artists’ native New York, and features a music sample of “Love on a Two-Way Street” (1970) by The Moments. The track was originally written after Brooklyn natives Angela Hunte and Jane’t “Jnay” Sewell-Ulepic were feeling homesick while on an overseas trip in February 2009. The following month they sent the song in for consideration at Roc Nation, but the song received negative reviews. Initially discouraged, the duo sent the song to Jay-Z after being suggested to by a associate of EMI, and after an incident which they described as an omen.

After hearing the song, Jay-Z immediately recorded it, having changed all of the verses, but keeping the hook. The track was suppose to feature Hunte on the song’s hook, but when Hunte and Sewell-Ulepic were asked if they thought someone else would be more appropriate for the chorus, Hunte suggested Keys. Mary J. Blige was also considered for Keys’ part, but Keys was chosen after Jay-Z heard the song’s piano loop. The song was viewed as being a “orchestral rap ballad” and has pop-rap musical styles. It contains references to drugs, locations in New York as well as its famous residents, and describes the city’s essence. Profanity is also present throughout the song, and although it is usually included during live performances, it was omitted during Jay-Z and Keys’ performance at Game 2 of the 2009 World Series. recently did a spoof of the song with ‘Galactic Empire State of Mind’ …

Galactic Empire State of Mind: He’s got 99 problems but a Jedi ain’t one. Bet you didn’t know Darth Vader was a rapper.

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