Jay-Z’s collaboration with filmmaker Danny Clinch and Absolut Vodka, the concert documentary NY-Z, premiered online this week, and it’s a brief behind-the-scenes look (filmed in stunning black-and-white) into the music mogul’s life living and working in New York. Take the jump to watch the entire ode to both Jay-Z and his beloved Empire State, featuring cameos by Mary J. Blige, Kid Cudi, John Mayer and more. (Sorry, no Beyoncé this time. But you can just watch the “Telephone” video for the 50th time to get your Bey quota filled for the day.)
The 15-minute film chronicles Jay-Z preparing to release The Blueprint 3 as well as his September 11 benefit concert at Madison Square Garden in 2009, but the film takes plenty of opportunities taken to wax poetic about the city of New York, too.
Many might find it disarming for Jay to pair up with a vodka brand in order to deliver a heartfelt, mostly serious message to his fans, but he assured that it wouldn’t turn into an extended commercial (akin to the massive amounts of product placement in Diddy’s “Cîroc Star”). Quoth Hova: “I’m all for collaborations, whether it be with business or with artists. It can’t be about money, there has to be something in there that’s true for both sides. I think it’s a great thing when two people come together with two different ideas and two different approaches and they align at the end of the day. No one loses when it’s like that.”
Jay-Z definitely has a winner with this beautifully shot doc.