Nas Weighs In on Trayvon Martin Tragedy, State of Hip-Hop

Nas

Nas caught up with Angie Martinez on Hot 97 to promote his new single “The Don” on Wednesday. The hip-hop O.G., who wore a hoodie in support of Trayvon Martin, spoke about his relationship with ex-wife Kelis and their son Knight, what he thinks of hip-hop today, and why he collaborated with Tyga. He also revealed that “Another Black Girl” will be one of the featured songs off his first solo album in four years, Life Is Good, and weighed in on the Martin tragedy.

On his son Knight, who turns three in July: “He looks like both of us. He looks a lot like [Kelis] in the eyes. He looks a lot like my first album cover [Illmatic] ’cause he got a little Afro.”

On his rocky relationship with ex-wife Kelis: “I’m still working toward that and that part is fun. Everything is about work, nothing’s easy. And I feel like if I didn’t have work, I’d just be dead.”

On the current state of hip-hop: “I love it. I like to see artists flossing. I like to see them make big records, go throw money in the clubs, and buy new chains. I just like people living their life and being happy.”

On how his collaboration with Tyga, “King & Queens,” came about: “My daughter was like, ‘Yo, Tyga’s that dude,’ and I know ‘Rack City’ is my joint. So I know when Tyga call, I’m on that album. That was her call.”

On the Trayvon Martin shooting: “You never wanna hear that kind of news. When it happens, you remember how many Trayvon incidents happen every day all over the world and have been happening. It doesn’t seem like the race problem will ever get solved. There’s a sickness that needs healing that this guy [George] Zimmerman is dealing with. And all the Zimmermans around the world, they’re dealing with hatred, ignorance, sickness, and they’re living in fear so I’m rocking my hoodie for my man.”

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20 Comments

  1. George

    I’m surprised that a legendary artist who hip-hop purist cite along with the likes of KRS-One & Tupac as one of the best to ever do it. Maybe cause Nas knows real HipHop is still here people just ignore it & then bitch that they miss it.

    Make no mistake Nas is a legend & a G in the game.

    [Reply]

    George Reply:

    @George, I meant that I’m surprised a hip hop legend is happy with state of hip hop.

    [Reply]

    Yeah Reply:

    @George, no 1 cares about what you have to say

    [Reply]

    Jewi Reply:

    @Yeah, I care, and i agree with him 100. hip hop purists are hypocrites. that’s why niggas like nas denounce their ignorance by making statements like this one.

    [Reply]

    music heals Reply:

    @Jewi,
    Co-sign that is why the same hip hop purists want Nas to continue working with the same producers from ILLMATIC because they are stuck in the past & Nas has proven over and over that he has evolved from his debut album from 1994 and he continues to show his growth with every album.
    Nas truly is a legend blessed with the great gift of lyricism. Nas’ insight into hip hop is the reason why he has such longevity & relevancy today.

    NAS WILL CONTINUE TO DENOUNCE THEIR IGNORANCE BECAUSE HE KNOWS THAT WITH EVOLUTION COMES CHANGE!

    [Reply]

    JussSayin Reply:

    @Yeah,

    And yet you think people care about what you have to say? funny!

    [Reply]

    a smart guy Reply:

    @Yeah, i know you gotta feel some kind of way… can we say
    #shutdown ??

    [Reply]

  2. Kyle

    Nas is one of my favorite rappers so I’m excited for him to drop his new album. The “Distant Relatives” album he did with Damien Marley was SOLID. Regarding his relationship with Kelis, I really wish they were still together. They were such an interesting couple and it seemed like they made it work for so long.

    [Reply]

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  5. jeremiah

    ahhhhhh.yall girls hook up with a brother

    [Reply]

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    [...] for already a little over a month now. Nas sat down for an interview with Hot 97’s Angie Martinez in promotion of “The Don” on Wednesday, during which he spoke about the tragic incident and why he shows his support for the slain teenager (via Rap-Up). [...]

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  8. TRA

    I respect Nas as one of the greatest rappers alive. I think Nas understands that there are still some good rappers putting out good music. The people who say hip hop is dead are talking about mainstream hip hop being dead, and that is true. I believe Kanye West, Jay-Z, Eminem, J.Cole, and Drake are the only five mainstream rappers putting out good music. All the other mainstream rappers are either average, or terrible. I believe 90 percent of mainstream hip hop is terrible. There is more to hip hop than just mainstream hip hop. Hip Hop fans need to remember that underground hip hop still has great rappers as well.

    Hip Hop still has great rappers like Nas, Common, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Big K.R.I.T., Lupe Fiasco, Bun B, Tech 9ine, Kendrick Lamar, and plenty of more great rappers who will never go mainstream, or sell big records, or get tons of radio airplay. I have no problem with Nas doing songs with Tyga, or any rapper with YMCMB because at the end of the day, Nas will always be a great rapper to me who won’t sellout all the time just to get attention. If Nas wanted to be mainstream, Nas could easily do it, and still be a great rapper, but that doesn’t always mean that Nas is going to sell big records.

    Nelly and 50 Cent sold more records than Nas, and nobody considers Nelly and 50 Cent great mainstream rappers right now. Everbody who understands hip hop knows Nas is a better rapper than both Nelly and 50 Cent. I think Nas was trying to show respect to his fellow rappers when he said he likes rappers who talks about flossing. I believe Nas understands that there are different types of hip hop for everyone to listen to.

    [Reply]

    sbz Reply:

    @TRA,

    I would say Nas is the best lyricist alive, probably ever, the complexity of lyrics and his soul is crazy and is in a level where your Jay’s, Kanye’s will never reach. But that’s not to say they aren’t very good rappers.

    Completely agree with him on the state of hip-hop, there is a place for everybody, as long as they speakin their mind and they’re happy it’s all good.

    On the note of underground hiphop, make sure you checkout Jay Electronica if you havent already. He is highly influenced by Nas and along with Kendrick Lamar the two most talented ‘underground’ rappers today.

    [Reply]

  9. dopeboi

    Nas was ill on that Kings & Queens joint.Nas is King!!! And my mehn Wale did good too.
    On what Nas said on the current state of hip hop, I think Nas has been caught up with d lifestyle of the New G’s he still feels young at heart and likes to see young people grow up to be like him.

    [Reply]

  10. Audrey Hepburn

    I have always thought Nas was the most intelligent rapper of all. :)

    [Reply]

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  13. jj

    i cant stand people who use the term “real hip hop” who the fck made you the ultimate decider of whats “real” .fckin wanna be genre gods annoy me…nas is right let people do what they do if you don’t like their music discuss it and move on, but some of yall take crap way to serious with smear campaigns n shyt, telling people their taste sucks specifically because they don’t support artist you do
    hip hop hipsters need to give it a fckin rest

    [Reply]

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