Grammy-nominated rapper Nas recently talked about taking heat for misconstrued rhymes and lack of fact checking in his lyrics.
Referencing his mix-up of Alexander the Great and Napoleon from his 2002 song “I Can,” Nas explained how he sometimes makes mistakes.
“You can sit back and say, ‘Let me perfect this’ and ‘Let me perfect that,'” Nas said in an interview, “but I was never that kind of artist. I’ve made albums where I slurred words, I’ve done crazy sh*t. People feel that. When [Rev] Run says ‘It’s three of us but we’re not the Beatles,’ he thought the Beatles had three people. It didn’t matter. ‘I’m the king of rock,’ not the Beatles, is what matters. As far as the line in ‘I Can,’ Alexander the Great and all those guys all affected each other. You can’t read about Napoleon without hearing about Alexander The Great, and vice versa. You might read one book about it, but that’s that author’s account of what happened. Someone else might say a whole different story, but if I speak on what happened in one man’s book, then that’s what it is.” (VIBE)
Earlier this month, Nas talked about his procedure for selecting producers.
“Well I have a wish list sometimes or I have a dream list of who I would love to work with and wish they would want to get in the studio and do records or whatever,” Nas said in an interview. “Then I have my own ideas of being a producer. And what happens is a lot of time goes by with me being indecisive so it winds up with me kind of like doing what I have to do really fast because I played around for so long. Then, the deadlines come. But, you never know who has it, everyone’s got a lot of talent. You have Little Brother, you have Drumma Boy. There’s a lot of dudes I like right now. You have DJ Toomp.” (BET)
Last month, Nas opened up about being a hip-hop veteran and watching rap newcomers.
“Where do I see myself, I’m waiting for the rap game to catch up,” Nas said during a press conference. “Not to sound arrogant, that’s just a generational thing. When the young guys come out, they hit me on the BlackBerry, real rap and it’s love because they can tell I love them. And it’s just like, we’re speaking from different perspectives so that’s why they appreciate the older stuff and kinda like it, or the guys that’s older than them because they can see where their future might be. But meanwhile, they’re reinventing the game from the early stage from a young stage.” (Rap Radar)
Nas released his new Damian Marley collaboration album, Distant Relatives, yesterday.
“Reggae and hip-hop are cousins,” he said in an interview. “Go back before the ’90s and think about the music that was playing on the ghetto blasters and you’ll hear it…The whole world is like family, split up all over the place. It’s overdue, and I want to help build whatever we can [in Africa]. I’ve worked with a lot of reggae artists, like Sizzla and Supercat, but not until [2005’s] Jamrock did I get a chance to work with Damian. I love his music and I’m a big fan of Bob Marley and the whole family. We haven’t worked out any tour dates yet. But I’m sure Damian and I will do something soon.” (Miami Herald)
Check out Nas’ “I Can” music video below: