Rap veteran Nas will take his talents to the literary world as new reports claim the hip-hop poet is headed to book shelves in 2012.
Although details are still emerging, Nas’ title and estimated release date have been revealed.
Nas is taking his war of words to the printed page. The rapper, known for his million-selling album Illmatic and his public feuds with Jay-Z and Bill O’Reilly, has a memoir coming out in the fall of 2012. HarperCollins, which is owned by News Corp., announced Monday the book will be called It Ain’t Too Hard to Tell, and co-written with Touré. Nas’ other records include It Was Written and Life is Good. (Crains New York)
Nas follows in the footsteps of his “Ghetto Dreams” collaborator Common who recently announced plans to drop an autobiography this fall.
In One Day It’ll All Make Sense, Common holds nothing back. He tells what it was like for a boy with big dreams growing up on the South Side of Chicago. He reveals how he almost quit rapping after his first album, Can I Borrow a Dollar?, sold only two thousand copies. He recounts his rise to stardom, giving a behind-the-scenes look into the recording studios, concerts, movie sets, and after-parties of a hip-hop celebrity and movie star. He reflects on his controversial invitation to perform at the White House, a story that grabbed international headlines. And he talks about the challenges of balancing fame, love, and fatherhood. (Amazon)
Last May, The Clipse’s Malice, who recently released his own book, talked to SOHH about emcees turning their writing skills into full length memoirs.
“You can’t box hip-hop in, you just can’t do it,” Malice told SOHH. “Rappers and artists are just creative. Period. It’s just that we’ve chosen this avenue [of rapping] whether it’s because we’re just good at it or it sells and were fortunate enough to get a deal. It’s what we do. But you can’t box it in. Hip-hop culture does everything. You know what I’m saying? We’re good at a lot of things from writing books to cutting hair. So you can find us in any facet and I just think as time goes on, more and more doors are going to be opening. You’re going to keep seeing a lot of rappers as actors on the big screen like Common and Andre 3000. There’s nothing that we can’t do and I think that the world as a whole is becoming more and more open, showing us more avenues that we can decide to go down.” (SOHH)
In fall 2010, Jay-Z’s Decoded contributor dream hampton also spoke to SOHH about the trend of rappers spilling their thoughts in novel form.
“Even as a writer, I don’t privilege the written word over the [spoken] word. I don’t think that a culture is less valid because it’s primarily oral and I don’t think that all of these hip-hop books validate or make hip-hop more real or more important. Hip-hop would be just as important as it is without anybody writing a book. With that said, there are a million ways that, because of someone like Jay-Z, hip-hop is becoming more formalized. And that was inevitable. We’re 30 years into this at least and it was just inevitable that hip-hop would make its way into universities and [grade school], and that it would be used to teach texts and all of the things that’s evolved to do.” (SOHH Guest Star)
No further details have been revealed as of now.