Update 6/26/14: Emma Stanganelli performed “Boston State of Mind” with Billy Joel at Fenway Park.
DERRY, N.H. (CBS) — Pat Garrett, a personal trainer in Derry, was working the day of the Boston Marathon. In the middle of the afternoon, he saw there had been a flurry of calls to his cell phone, which he said is kind of unusual. Pat said he finally picked up the phone, and saw a message from his daughter that caught his attention.
“Prior to answering my friend’s phone call, I read a text from her that said, ‘We’re at Boston Beer Works, everything’s fine.’ I didn’t understand what she meant … but as I found out the news of what happened, I knew she was safe,” he said.
Pat has a love of the city and thought now was the time he could do something positive. “I’m a big fan of Billy Joel, and I heard the song (“New York State of Mind”), came up with an idea, and put together some lyrics.” The result was “Boston State of Mind.”
He recorded the re-worked tune and played it for his friend, Noreen Fantasia of Salem. She liked the idea, but there was one small problem. “The vocals,” she said with a chuckle, “needed to go in a different direction. … I asked my friend Susan if her daughter Emma could sing the vocals.”
Emma Stanganelli, 12, who’s been singing and dancing most of her life, thought it was a great idea. “I listened to ‘New York State of Mind’ a couple of times, and once I kind of got the hang of it, I (sang) ‘Boston State of Mind.’ Mister Garrett did a wonderful job,” she said.
To make the video, Noreen used pictures Pat had from all around the Boston area, and matched them up to the words Emma sang.
“Once we had the video out on YouTube and it started to take off, a couple of people suggested that we get in touch with Billy Joel in case it really took off,” she said. “I took the route of getting in touch with his publishing company. Susan and her husband, Todd, got in touch with his management company. The publishing company granted us the rights to the melody, and to changing the words to the song. ”
Pat hopes the video catches on and inspires people to give to One Fund Boston. Contributions can be made at onefundboston.org.