Nas Says He Missed the Mark by Miles With the Concept of ‘Hip-Hop Is Dead’ Album
Nas' eighth studio album, Hip-Hop Is Dead, celebrated its 10-year anniversary this week (Dec. 19) and to commemorate, Mass Appeal and Google Play partnered up for a new video series in which Nas himself explains four aspects of the work: its title, lead single, the Jay Z collaboration "Black Republican" and the album's place in hip-hop history.
In the above clip, Nas discusses the album's controversial title, saying he took inspiration from De La Soul's 1991 album, De La Soul Is Dead, the concept of a group killing themselves off striking him as something new. "I felt like it would be dope if I could say something like ‘Hip-Hop is Dead’ that would make some of the young guys realize that not only can you follow what’s happening today, but you can go back into the history," he says. "I was just trying to open up the art form. In retrospect, I missed the mark by miles. I didn’t want to pick people apart, I felt like it was for a younger artist to do."
Below meanwhile, Nas discusses the album's lead single of the same name. The song, produced by will.i.am, uses the same "Apache" sample as "Thief's Theme," the lead single off Nas' previous album Street's Disciple. “He pieced the record together based off of pieces I left in the studio," Nas says. "When he played me the record I was like, 'That’s it.’"
Watch the first two video features above and below, Nas as well as explaining the album's cover art.
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