On his Billboard-chart topping single “Empire State of Mind,” the legendary Jay-Z raps about his former drug stash spot in Brooklyn at 560 State Street. While the area’s changed immensely since you could catch Hova “in the kitchen like a Simmons whippin’ Pastry,” one lucky fan got the chance to reminisce with the New York emcee at his old crib.
In a recent blog from Fuse, writer Amit Whele explained how a freak request to use his menorah led to Jay returning to his former abode, where Whele currently lives. He said that a friend of his brother’s who happened to be producing Jay’s eight night performance series at the Barclays Center asked to borrow a menorah so that Jay could commemorate the opening backstage.
This odd request eventually led to the producers of Ron Howard’s upcoming Made in America documentary to ask if Hov could swing by his old spot to reminisce on his hustling days.
“[Jay] went on to say that 560 State was where he first started gaining real momentum in Hip Hop,” writes Whele. “It’s where he realized that he needed to cut out all the other shit in his life (read: selling drugs) and focus on his passion. Once he applied himself, and dedicated all his energy into the music (rather than the street), things started moving quickly. He remembered that in those early days, rap was a real family affair. He employed his friends to fill all the needed spots in his developing empire: If you were talented at drawing, then you were in charge of artwork. Good with logistics? Now you’re booking shows.”
Check out the full post over at Fuse.