NEW YORK (AP) – Jay Z is in a global state of mind: The rap star performed Saturday for thousands in New York’s Central Park and encouraged the crowd to help end world poverty.
Jay Z headlined the Global Citizen Festival on the Great Lawn, where Beyonce surprised the audience by performing with her husband.
He told the crowd of 60,000 – many of whom earned free tickets by volunteering – to support the Global Citizen Festival’s effort to end poverty by 2030.
“We out here for a good cause,” he said onstage. “I want to thank everybody out here for this good movement.”
Dressed in all black, Jay Z wore a hoodie with the Global Citizen Festival’s logo and the names of other headliners, including Carrie Underwood, The Roots, Alicia Keys, Tiesto, fun. and No Doubt, who brought out special guest Sting to perform “Message In a Bottle”, a crowd favourite.
Jay Z’s electrifying set opened with audio from Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” and Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind”. The Brooklyn-born rapper then went into his own New York anthem, “Empire State of Mind”, and followed it with his rich catalogue of hits, from “Big Pimpin” to “Izzo (HOVA)” to “99 Problems”.