A Welsh rap group has become a Youtube sensation after releasing a spoof version of Jay-Z and Alicia Keys’ hit track about New York – with lyrics on NEWPORT.
The parody of ‘Empire State of Mind’ has received over 110,000 hits in just two days and is now spreading virally across the internet.
It has been aired on BBC Radio 1 and tweeted by celebrities including Lily Allen, Gavin and Stacey comic Rob Brydon, and comedians Phil Jupitus and Dom Joly.
The hilarious three-and-a-half minute spoof video features local Newport rapper Alex Warren as Jay-Z and singer Terema Wainwright as Alicia Keys.
The first chorus states: ”In Newport, concrete jungle nothing in order, not far from the border. When you’re in Newport.
”Chips, cheese and curry makes you feel brand new, washed down with a Special Brew.
Repeat the word Newport, Newport, Newport.”
The video was produced by director Morgan-Jane ‘MJ’ Delaney, 24, from London, who today said she ”can’t believe” how quickly the video has taken off.
She said: ”We came up with the idea when we were singing along with Jay-Z and trying different words in place of New York – Newport was by far the funniest.
”My mother is Welsh so she put me in touch with my uncle’s, wife’s, sister, who lives in Newport, and she came up with some great ideas for the lyrics.
”We wanted to make something people from Newport would be proud of and we have had some really positive feedback.
”I was hoping for 10,000 hits at the most but it’s grown so fast and we can’t believe how quickly it has taken off – over 85,000 in two days.
”I hope Jay-Z and Alicia get to see the video as long as their publishing people don’t force us to take it offline. It’s only tongue in cheek.”
The spoof song is titled ‘Newport (Ymerodraeth State of Mind)’, where the Welsh word ‘Ymerodraeth’ translates as ‘Empire’
MJ came up with the idea in May this year and wrote the lyrics with friends Leo Sloley and Tom Williams before filming with Warren and Wainwright in June.
The song follows in the footsteps of hip hop group Goldie Lookin Chain, from Newport, who shot to fame in 2004 for their comedy take on Welsh society.
MJ includes references to famous Welsh celebrities and boldly states: ”Bugger off Alicia, Shirley Bassey is our queen.”
The first verse continues: ”On the dancefloor raving, pack of 16 Benson, someone fighting bouncers – turns out it’s Gavin Henson.”
The last two chorus pay tribute to Newport’s Chinese twin town, presenter Josie D’Arby and the town’s well-documented problems with congestion.
”In Newport, twinned with Guangxi Province in China, there’s no province finer. Josie D’Arby’s from Newport. Yes it’s strange we didn’t know either, thankyou Wikipedia.
”Let’s say some more Newports, Newports, Newports.”
”In Newport, access from the A4042, traffic will enrage you, on your way to Newport. Our shopping centre is quite new, big leeks will inspire you.
”Repeat to fade Newport, Newport, Newport.”
What do you think of the parody? Leave your comments below