Our Curious, Proud, and Offended Reactions to Local 'Empire State of Mind' Covers
By PopEater Staff Posted Apr 8th 2010 10:15AM
This week, our viral-minded pals at Urlesque compiled 58 'Empire State of Mind' covers floating around online. Now we, the PopEater staff, are here to tell you what we think of the Jay-Z wannabes' numerous takes on our various necks of the woods. Some are great, some are woeful, but we all agree on one thing -- none can even touch that gorgeous Alicia Keys refrain.
Editor-in-Chief Jason Kaufman on 'Garden State of Mind'
Lyrics could have a better mix, but I am giving a "Dirty Jerz" thumbs up for the retro angle here. YouTuber Reggin119 gets points for flashbacks -- I had forgotten all about the Metrostars and Wild West City commercials, but he hits on them here. If anything, he's laying on too many Jersey sports references and a bit too much focus on doping. Drop a blunt reference and add in a Mack's Pizza at Wildwood shout out and I'd feel better. I'm still giving Reg props for not taking the easy way out by turning the whole song into a Springsteen/'Sopranos' love letter.
Photo Editor Maggie Coughlan on 'County Cork State of Mind'
Being born and raised in New York, nothing beats the original Jay-Z/Alicia Keys anthem. But hearing the County Cork version makes me feel like my Irish grandparents missed their calling as rappers.
Editor Steven Avalos on 'Boca Raton State of Mind'
I wish I could dispute someone's slightly tone-deaf grandmother dancing awkwardly pool-side as she marvels over the eclectic mix of Boca Raton's adobe and pink architecture, overabundance of palm trees and access to world class bagels, but alas, it is very much the truth. Though I'm often reluctant to admit that I was raised in America's very own Geriatric Wonderland, moving forward I will be proud of this fact, using this video to celebrate my roots. Now, if you'll excuse me, there's a 'Golden Girls' marathon on and I'm getting distracted.
Editor Amber James on 'Cleveland State of Mind'
Yes, Cleveland might be the "mistake on the lake," but this is MY hometown that boasts the likes of LeBron James and the infamous Flats. While 'Cleveland State of Mind' is a good try at capturing the downtown essence, it is too mellow for the tough hustle the musicians are singing about. I shouldn't underestimate this perfect summer jam though; I can imagine myself playing this song while rolling down 9th Street with the windows down. Oh, Cleveland.
Copy Editor John Mitchell on 'Wal-Mart State of Mind'
Having grown up in the type of backwoods Pennsylvania enclave that rarely gets a shout out (except in horror movies), the state of mind I relate most to comes courtesy of that constant of rural American life -- Wal-Mart. Dillio's commentary -- from seeing your teacher to leaving with everything but what you went in for -- hits the nail on the head. Though, his most acute observation (aside from the ever-present crying baby) regards those you'll find lurking the aisles in the wee hours. If you're not sure what I'm referring to, check out People of Wal-Mart for an idea. You don't know fear until you've seen a mullet-sporting woman wearing nothing but red spandex shorts and a sports bra... and faced her down for the last bag of Doritos.
Editorial Assistant Zach Dionne on 'Portland State of Mind'
Maine, that is, not that other Portland. This one's mostly a five-minute drag with some wicked Mainahs trying to squeeze way too many words in -- it feels more like a frenetic ad on local TV than an homage to the awesome seaside city. Props for name-dropping my all-time favorite brewery, Shipyard, though.
Bonus: Moviefone/AOL TV News Editor Andrew Scott on 'Oprah State of Mind'
My hometown (Buffalo, NY) wasn't featured. But that's OK, because no matter where I am, I'm always in an Oprah State of Mind. Which is why I was a little disappointed by this video in the beginning, as it spent the first half taking one easy shot after another. Luckily, it recovered towards the middle, and by the end of it, I was so ready to throw one hand in the air for Oprah, just like I do every weekday at 4PM. Consider this one of my new favorite things.
Check out the original Urlesque post!
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