Twenty years after making his debut, Nas is taking his career in a new direction. The rap veteran is launching the independent label Mass Appeal Records, where he will release Lost Tapes 2.
According to Billboard, Nas will make the transition to independent after his deal with Def Jam expires later this year.
“I’m excited to be a part of creating and supporting future careers and legacy artists, promoting love and finding new genius to help the world,” said Nas. “I’m going to be as involved as I need to be, but I also want to be respectful of the art and give artists the space they need to grow and become themselves.”
Co-founded by Peter Bittenbender, Mass Appeal Records succeeds Decon Records, a boutique hip-hop label started by Bittenbender and video director Jason Goldwatch in 2002.
The first Mass Appeal release, due later this summer, will be an annual compilation album featuring Future, Pusha T, Mac Miller, A$AP Mob, and Nas, who will perform a cover of Gang Starr’s 1994 single “Mass Appeal.”
Nas also plans to release Lost Tapes 2, the long-awaited sequel to his 2002 collection of unreleased music.
Also in the works is a posthumous album from UGK member Pimp C that will feature contributions from today’s hitmakers including Juicy J, Mike WiLL Made It, and DJ Mustard.