Empire State of Mind: How Jay-Z Went from Street Corner to Corner Office

( 32 )

Overview

"I'm not a businessman-I'm a business, man."
?Jay-Z

Some people think Jay-Z is just another rapper. Others see him as just another celebrity/mega-star. The reality is, no matter what you think Jay-Z is, he first and foremost a business. And as much as Martha Stewart or Oprah, he has turned himself into a lifestyle.

You can wake up to the local radio station playing Jay-Z's latest hit, spritz yourself with his 9IX cologne, slip on a pair of his Rocawear jeans, lace up your Reebok...

See more details below
Paperback
$10.38
BN.com price
(Save 30%)$15.00 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (32) from $4.43   
  • New (17) from $4.61   
  • Used (15) from $4.43   
Empire State of Mind: How Jay-Z Went from Street Corner to Corner Office

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$12.99
BN.com price

Overview

"I'm not a businessman-I'm a business, man."
—Jay-Z

Some people think Jay-Z is just another rapper. Others see him as just another celebrity/mega-star. The reality is, no matter what you think Jay-Z is, he first and foremost a business. And as much as Martha Stewart or Oprah, he has turned himself into a lifestyle.

You can wake up to the local radio station playing Jay-Z's latest hit, spritz yourself with his 9IX cologne, slip on a pair of his Rocawear jeans, lace up your Reebok S. Carter sneakers, catch a Nets basketball game in the afternoon, and grab dinner at The Spotted Pig before heading to an evening performance of the Jay-Z-backed Broadway musical Fela! and a nightcap at his 40/40 Club. He'll profit at every turn of your day.

But despite Jay-Z's success, there are still many Americans whose impressions of him are foggy, outdated, or downright incorrect. Surprisingly to many, he honed his business philosophy not at a fancy B school, but on the streets of Brooklyn, New York and beyond as a drug dealer in the 1980s.

Empire State of Mind tells the story behind Jay-Z's rise to the top as told by the people who lived it with him- from classmates at Brooklyn's George Westinghouse High School; to the childhood friend who got him into the drug trade; to the DJ who convinced him to stop dealing and focus on music. This book explains just how Jay-Z propelled himself from the bleak streets of Brooklyn to the heights of the business world.

Zack O'Malley Greenburg draws on his one-on-one interviews with hip-hop luminaries such as DJ Clark Kent, Questlove of The Roots, Damon Dash, Fred "Fab 5 Freddy" Brathwaite, MC Serch; NBA stars Jamal Crawford and Sebastian Telfair; and recording industry executives including Craig Kallman, CEO of Atlantic Records.
He also includes new information on Jay-Z's various business dealings, such as:

• The feature movie about Jay-Z and his first basketball team that was filmed by Fab 5 Freddy in 2003 but never released.

• The Jay-Z branded Jeep that was scrapped just before going into production.

• The real story behind his association with Armand de Brignac champagne.

• The financial ramifications of his marriage to Beyonce.

Jay-Z's tale is compelling not just because of his celebrity, but because it embodies the rags-to-riches American dream and is a model for any entrepreneur looking to build a commercial empire.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Forbes staffer Greenburg's first book is a fond look at a successful idol; in fact, the author thanks "Jay-Z for living a life worthy of chronicling." Celebrity enchantment aside, this effort offers little new information. Though it's not for a lack of trying; Greenburg is an enthusiastic researcher but admits to having requests to interview Jay-Z himself declined. Thus, only a few first person interviews-rambling anecdotes at that-have made the cut. Perhaps this obvious omission resulted in Greenburg's unfortunate decision to analyze the mogul's behavior. The chapter devoted to Beyonce reads like a compilation of People magazine articles: "raised a devout Methodist...in an upper-middle-class neighborhood in Houston, Texas." When their six-year relationship was formalized by marriage, Beyonce wore a "$5 million Lorraine Schwartz ring." Perhaps the book's most interesting moment also illustrates Jay-Z's single-minded determination to succeed: after Greenburg met with Jay-Z's "consigliere," John Meneilly, to discuss the book, Jay-Z "repurposed the memoir he'd scuttled in 2003 and released his book before this one went to press."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews

In his debut, former Forbes reporter Greenburg offers a gossipy, middling Jay-Z bio/business study.

According to some calculations from the author, the rapper/entrepreneur is worth a whopping $450 million. The story of how the tongue-twisting lyricist built himself up from a drug dealer to one of the world's most recognizable, respected entertainment hyphenates is inspirational, but it's a well-worn story. The author makes a gallant effort to appeal to both the casual music fan and the hardcore hip-hop listener, but he can't quite pull it off. The story of Jay-Z-as-businessman is better suited to a magazine article, and Greenburg injects far too much filler into the narrative. The author periodically interjects himself into the interviews, and while his writing is solid, his appearance in the pages adds very little to the proceedings. Had he structured the book as a personal quest to find the "real" Jay-Z—an intriguing exercise in stunt journalist—it could have been special. Readers interested in the Jigga should check out his inventive, stellar autobiography,Decoded (2010). Though it doesn't offer the nuts and bolts of how the rapper made the leap from the street corner to the corner office (now there's a corny subtitle), it provides a potent glimpse of the heart of the man, which isn't the case here.

Aside from some dirt-dishing by former colleagues and some specifics about the extent of Jay-Z's fortune, the book doesn't offer anything of substance that can't be found elsewhere.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781591845409
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/26/2012
  • Pages: 260
  • Sales rank: 115,904
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.60 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Zack O'Malley Greenburg is a staff writer at Forbes, where he has covered finance and music since 2005. Along the way he's profiled the likes of Akon, 50 Cent and Afrika Bambaataa; his stories have taken him from the casinos of Macau to the diamond mines of Sierra Leone. He has also written for The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, and Dan's Papers. He lives in New York City.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Foreword Steve Forbes ix

Introduction 1

1 A Hard Knock Life 11

2 The Roc-A-Fella Dynasty 31 3

3 Building a Notorious Brand 51

4 Jay-Z's First Basketball Team 65

5 Early Retirement 83

6 Def Jam Takeover 27

7 Champagne Secrets 111

8 To Infinity-and Beyoncé 135

9 Net Gain 153

10 Who Killed the Jay-Z Jeep? 169

11 Reinventing the Roc 105

12 History and Beyond 203

13 The Re-Rebranding of Jay-Z 207

Afterword 219

Acknowledgments 221

Notes 226

Index 253

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 32 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(13)

4 Star

(11)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 27, 2012

    Recommend

    It was a good read, the author did a good joinfo getting a lot of analysis from those Jay-Z trampled over on his way to the top, and also gave the reader a good perspective on how he "does business".

    However the author portrayed Jay-Z as a hard worker (to get where he's at) I'd like to read some points or speculations into what made his success possible beyond hard work. What opportunities were he given that others around him weren't given? There's been plenty of illuminati theorists out there... If that's true, it should be included as a factor of his success.

    Then again, it's probably difficult to hold credibility when writing about a secret / conspiracy.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 25, 2011

    Awesome!

    A book that is truly inspiring from jay z going from drug dealer to being the best rapper i think he deservers 5 stars not just because of his leagacy to the rap bussiness but because he is a hero and once reading this book you'll feel like a hero to.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 30, 2012

    Jay-Z is everywhere these days with the opening of the new Barcl

    Jay-Z is everywhere these days with the opening of the new Barclay's Center and the debut of the Brooklyn Nets. The highlights of his life are pretty well known: his drug dealing days, entry into the world of hip-hop, some of his romantic history. Empire State of Mind chronicles his moves as a businessman and the stories behind the mega-deals and branding he has been associated with.

    While we are familiar with his clothing brands, his nightclubs, and stint as the head of Def Jam, Greenburg shows us the plans that either never came through because of Jay's need for perfection or were kept under raps because of his need for secrecy. Some of the people interviewed were obviously reluctant to speak about someone who admittedly still holds a lot of power in the world of hip-hop. But Greenburg doesn't give up; especially when tracking down the ultra secret story behind a deal with Jeep that never happened.

    Perfect for Jay-Z fans as well as for those who enjoy a good business biography.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2011

    This book started slow, almost dropped it. Interesting look at how JayZ does business.

    Slow start. Got good in the middle.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)