R&B singer Ginuwine believes his feature on Nas‘ “You Owe Me” single helped the rap icon make one of his biggest records to date.
Ginuwine believes the 1999 R&B cut helped Nas experiment outside of his comfort zone.
“I think you can be versatile. You don’t have to stay on one thing all the time. People have fun and they experiment and that’s what he might’ve been doing. And everyone wants to appeal to the masses; you want your voice to be heard. With him and what he stands for, if he reached millions of other people, he could change those millions of other people. So you don’t want to just keep yourself in a box, you want to get out there and experiment and do whatever it is that’s going to make you huge. And that song was probably one of the biggest songs of his career. People still give me love when I do it on my shows. So I think it’s healthy for someone to go out and experiment. You can’t stay the same all the time. You get bored.” (VIBE)
The single was featured on Nas’ Nastradamus solo album.
Columbia had scheduled to release the pirated material from I Am… under the title Nastradamus during the latter half of 1999, but, at the last minute, Nas decided to record an entire new album for the 1999 release of Nastradamus. Nastradamus was therefore rushed to meet a November release date. Though critics were not kind to the album, it did result in a minor hit, “You Owe Me.” It was produced by Timbaland and featured R&B singer Ginuwine. (Wikipedia)
On Jay-Z‘s “Blueprint 2,” he poked fun at the rapper’s hit single.
“Cause the n*gga wear a coofie, it don’t mean that he bright/Cause you don’t understand him, it don’t mean that he nice/It just means you don’t understand all the bullsh*t that he write/Is it ‘Oochie Wally Wally’ or is it ‘One Mic?’/Is it ‘Black Girl Lost’ or shorty ‘Owe’ you for ice?” (“Blueprint 2″)
Producer Alex da Kid recently spoke with SOHH about taking an experimental approach on Nas’ new album.
“I want to try and keep him, obviously as Nas but just to bring him to a broader audience,” Alex added. “Try to get him into that rhythmic radio as well as urban and I want to bring him to a broader audience. He’s one of the biggest rappers to ever do it. I definitely want to make sure he goes to a broader audience. Working with an icon like Nas, I definitely would want to make something from scratch, I really haven’t had the chance to think about it because I’ve been so busy but I kinda know where I want to go with it. I definitely want to make something from scratch for Nas.” (SOHH)
Check out Nas & Ginuwine’s “You Owe Me” down below: