Alicia Keys and Jay-Z were both "surprised" by the success of 'Empire State of Mind'.

The pair initially worried their duet - which became one of the biggest hits both artists have ever had - was "too New York", but soon realised it had a universal appeal.

Alicia said: "It surprised us all, how well it did. I'll never forget Jay and I were finishing the song and he said, 'Do you think it's too New York?' and I said, 'Kind of, but what else is it going to be?'

"But it's not about New York, it's about coming from nowhere and being successful. Anyone can relate to it. Just cross out 'New York' and put in the name of wherever you're from and it's relevant."

Alicia - who has a nine-month-old son Egypt with husband Swizz Beatz - also admitted she can't imagine living anywhere else but the 'Big Apple'.

The 30-year-old musician - who was raised in the Hell's Kitchen area of Manhattan by her mother Teresa Augello - revealed in an interview with The Guardian newspaper: "I feel comfortable there. I tried to live in Los Angeles once but I can't."