News: Nas Says Smarten Up: "Rule #1. Get Outta Ya Own Way. Open Ya Mind!"

Friday, Apr 19, 2013 8:06AM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

New York rap veteran Nas appeared to feel inspired this week by hopping onto his Twitter page to drop some knowledge to his one million-plus followers.

While it is still unclear what sparked the motivation, Nasty Nas gave a few tips people should capitalize off of.

"How can we create millions of more Jobs in our country? 1 thing 4 sure. We gota all get Smarter. Fast.," Nas tweeted April 18th.
"Rule#1. Get outta ya own way. Open ya mind! Research . Believe.. n Give em that Work!" (Nas' Twitter)

The rap mogul recently showed off his own business smarts by investing in hip-hop publication Mass Appeal.

The Queens-born rapper tells FORBES that he has invested a "six-figure" sum in the publication, which re-emerged as a quarterly print product earlier this year after a five-year hiatus. "I always liked what they represented," says Nas. "They invested into the culture ... I saw their vision for what they planned and I thought I could add value across the board." He will serve as Associate Publisher for Mass Appeal, which was originally founded in 1996 as a graffiti magazine and has since involved into a broader outfit spanning print, web, video and a monthly event series. (Forbes)

When asked why he wanted to join Mass Appeal, Nasir said he felt he could bring something new to the table.

Nas explained that he'd been dismayed at the lack of options for readers interested in all aspects of hip-hop culture, particularly on the newsstands. He considered starting his own publication, as Jay-Z did, but figured he'd have better luck using an existing brand as a launching pad. "Mass Appeal has a legacy and respect," he says. "It already has a foundation ... I just feel like I can add on because I can lend my kind of cultural expertise and my professional acumen, and develop the business." The move is indicative of a shift in the rapper's priorities. Unlike some of his musical contemporaries, Nas wasn't among the first wave of mainstream hip-hop entrepreneurs that sprang up in the late 1990s and early 2000s. (Forbes)

While Nas' bucks will help provide stability for the publication, he can also rely on his 12 Society buyers guide website to keep his business image alive.

"To me the 12 Society thing is just people like myself and other people that are involved connecting with the people, giving them some insight on our lifestyle and making the people a part of it," Nas told MTV News on Tuesday. For Nas, the 12 Society experience is an extension of his music. On 1996's "Street Dreams," the Nasty one rapped about his David Robinson Nike sneakers, Guess jeans and Clarks Wallabee moccasins; it was like a lyrical fashion tutorial. It's a style that Nas still employs. On "The Don," he name-drops high-end brands like Roberto Cavalli as well as his favorite rugged army-green jacket, which he rhymed about on his classic 1994 single "It Ain't Hard to Tell." "It comes from music, it comes from me talking about certain kicks and sneakers I might like," he said. "With 12 Society you don't have to just listen to me talk about a certain shirt, you'll get that. You'll get that delivered to you." (MTV)

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