Posts tagged ‘Nas’

September 13, 2016


Saturday at Reading Festival begun in the best way possible, and that was with one of Grime’s hardest working producers Rude Kid who played an array of tunes including Punjabi MC that was mixed into a remix full of bass. Grime tracks he played included Kano’s ‘3 Wheel Up’s’ which led into Skepta ft. JME ‘That’s Not Me’. Rude Kid’s vibe on stage got the whole crowd bubbling off of his energy and it definitely didn’t feel like it was 2pm.

Drum & Bass was next on the agenda over at the NME Stage firstly with Belgium producer Netsky who kicked off with their own track ‘Running Low’, leading into ‘Intrap’. The atmosphere was buzzing inside the tent with everyone having fun and good vibes. He ended on track ‘Rio’ which was rather fitting with the Olympics just finishing there.

Sigma hit the stage after with their host saying “We are live to the world on the BBC, make some nooooiiseeee! Are y’ll ready for some live Drum & Bass, are y’ll ready for Sigma”, which ended with the crowds screams. They begun their high-energy set with their huge track ft. Labrinth ‘Higher’. They played an collection of their classic tracks such as ‘Rudeboy’ ft Doctor with the packed tent skanking out to every one.

As the end of the evening was approaching South London Rap duo Krept & Konan brought their flawless energy and vitality to the NME Stage. They performed tracks such as ‘MDMA’ ft. G Frsh, ‘Don’t Waste My Time’ and brought out Abra Cadabra for the ‘Robbery Remix’. They had the whole crowd chanting their lyrics back to them like true underground rappers who have risen to stardom.

New York superstar Nas who was the main attraction of the night entered onto the NME stage looking like class and opening with a dramatic intro leading into ‘You Can Hate Me Now’. Joined by DJ Green Lantern, he played his most classic tracks such as ‘Nas Is Like’ ‘Got Yourself A Gun,’ ‘N.Y State Of Mind’ and closing with my favourite ‘One Mic’. He paid respect to two late but great legends Prince and Michael Jackson with track ‘Human Nature’, sampling ‘’It Ain’t Hard To Tell’.


He performed with power, authority and strength leaving his fans in absolute awe and saying at the end “Music can last forever”, we fully agree with you Nas.

July 29, 2014

Lovebox Festival Saturday 2014 [Review]

Lovebox returned to Victoria Park in East London again this year over the Friday 18th and 19th July 2014. SBTV‘s Shireen headed down there on the Saturday, with the sun beating down on us despite the rainy forecast…


First up we caught some of Supa Dupa Fly action over at the Roller Boogie stage where they were banging out some old school hip hop beats courtesy of Emily Rawson, CJ Beatz and more, with a similar vibe to that of their nights held at the Jazz Café in Camden.

Heading straight over to the main stage, we caught the British soul & funk legends that are Soul II Soul , who many know for their smash Back To Life. Their music filtered through the crowd, with a nice mellow and relaxed vibe, perfect for the summer, Saturday, afternoon.

Maverick Sabre was next up on the main stage, leading on perfectly with his soulful, jazzy and reggae influences, he kept the crowds ambiance on the same level, lifting it slowly as his set moved on playing tracks from his album, Lonely Are The Brave. Similarly, I Needgot everyone in the crowd singing loudly – as did his latest single, Emotion.


Then, it was time for Nas, a crowd of people begun walking up, and what seemed like a reasonably spacious main stage was now packed. Joined by DJ Green Lantern, the Queensbridge legend took to the stage to perform tracks from his seminal debut, Illmatic, celebrating 20 years since the release. Tracks such as Got Yourself A Gungot everyone buzzing and raising their gun fingers.

Other tracks that seemed to please were One LoveIf I Ruled The World, N.Y State Of Mind and Made You Look. Nas had turned the energy levels to 100.  He proved why he is one of the best hip hop artists working the stage and fans with complete effortlessness.

Next up was MIA who blast onto the stage which was now filled with lights and around 20 dancers who threw glow sticks into the audiences to their delight. She started straight intoBucky Done Gun, but unfortunately this was the beginning of the audio issues as she asked for her Mic to be turned up.


Unfortunately the Mic cut out completely and her and her dancers walked off stage leaving MIA looking not very pleased. She came back on stage to the audience’s gladness, but the sound quality was still poor as she performed Paper Planes and Bad Girls leaving again because of the audio. It was a disappointment as we, along with I’m sure many others in attendance, were similarly looking forward to the performance.

October 10, 2012

Nas [Interview]

When we heard Nas was in London performing tracks from his new album ‘Life Is Good’, we were excited to say the least – so you can imagine how we felt when the opportunity arose for us to sit down with one of hip-hop’s greatest artists for a chat. The Wrap Up’s Shireen Fenner talked to ‘The Don’ about the recently released video for ‘Cherry Wine’ featuring the late Amy Winehouse, rumours of him not writing his own lyrics and future collaborative albums…

The Wrap Up: You always rep your hometown of Queensbridge, New York. How did living there influence you and what connection do you still retain?

Nas: That is where I was raised; it taught me everything. I grew up with the heroes of music; Marley Marl and his production, MC Shan. Lots of big records were made in that neighborhood by Marley Marl, to Salt ‘n’ Pepa and Heavy D. Lots of pioneers did their first hits with Marley Marl in the studio in my neighborhood. Of course, I was too young to notice at the time, but I just loved the musical history from my hood. I’m like, ‘wow, this place is special’ – it blew me away.

TWU: As a poet, you are outspoken at times. Do you stand by everything you have said over the years, or do you have any regrets?

Nas: I don’t have any regrets. The things that I have said when I was young and curious about whatever the subject matter was, I respect those – those are growing pains. Even if you make mistakes, I go back to those things, my not-so-great moments because those are my truest moments; those are my human moments. I’m not even mad at the things I said that were a little dicey.

TWU: You have been called one of the greatest lyricists of our time. So how did you feel when there were rumours that you don’t write your own lyrics?

Nas: Nothing. Nothing at all. I felt a little bit like Shakespeare, if I may be so bold. They said he didn’t exist. They said that a bunch of poets combined were Shakespeare. That’s funny, it’s funny! I take it as a high compliment… actually, that’s too much of a compliment – I have to humble myself.

TWU: You have been in the game for a long time. Can you tell us the lowest moment of your career and the pinnacle of your career to date?

Nas: I don’t really know the lowest moment; I’ve always stopped something once I saw it becoming a little too big. We come from banging on the tables at lunch time and freestyling raps at elementary school to actually having records and albums – that’s enough! That’s already an amazing accomplishment. Whenever I received too much praise, it just didn’t feel right to me – ever. I was always in control of how big it [the movement] got or how much it chilled out; I was for the most part in full control, so I’ve been all good.

In terms of pinnacles, I’m always trying to outdo the next thing. Bruce Lee said something like, ‘there are no limits, only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them…’ I’m a fan of Bruce Lee, but I believe there are no plateaus. You continue to grow… I don’t know if I have reached my pinnacle.

TWU: The video for ‘Cherry Wine’ has just been released – can you explain the concept of the video?

Nas: It was touchy – I just wanted to respect her [Amy Winehouse’s] memory. She was not like any of these artists that are out today; it had to be done in a way that was right. I had to make sure it didn’t look pop; I had to make sure it felt natural. The director made it happen, he knew what I wanted – I love the way it came out. Of course, we all wish she was still here with us to do the video, but I’m a rider and I’m keeping that memory alive.

TWU: Kelis and your daughter are talked about subjects on the album ‘Life Is Good’. How important was it to you to wear your heart on your sleeve lyrically?

Nas: It was really important. When I was writing the record, those were the things that I was dealing with. I went to the studio to record other records, but the stuff that was weighing heavy on me was what I winded up writing about.

TWU: ‘Belly’ is one of my all-time favourite movies! Do you have any plans to act again in the future?

Nas: [Laughs] Yes, I do. I walked away from it. I wasn’t into acting for a long time, I did the TV stuff to see how I felt about it again and I liked it so I’m ready.

TWU: What are your thoughts on the new generation of rappers?

Nas: There are some real good artists out there, like Big Sean; everything he is on, he does his thing. There’s so many that are doing what they do – it keeps me excited to watch where they’re going to take it – they also push me.

TWU: Share your thoughts on UK music with us.

Nas: I like the great artists from here, from Slick Rick to Sade to Phil Collins, George Michael and Soul II Soul. I also like the artists before us, like The Beatles. There is a great history musically here. I also really like the underground rap scene here; I can’t remember names, but I will see something from time to time that really impresses me and is really dope.

TWU: There have been talks of three collaboration albums in the pipeline between you, Mobb Deep, Common and DJ Premier. Are they still going ahead?

Nas: The one that was really meant to be happening was between DJ Premier and me; we’re talking. I definitely have plans to do more collaboration albums in the future. I’m a big fan of Common. I’m a big fan of Scarface; I’m a big fan of so many people, from Jeezy to… well, there are a lot of people’s music that I respect. I don’t know who I will collaborate with, but there’s a great chance of something happening.

Nas will be performing at the o2 arena on March 19 – for your tickets, head to TicketMaster.

October 9, 2012

MTV Wrap UP: UK Rap Rundown [News]

Nas was in London last week to play three intimate shows and brought Wretch 32 and George the Poet for support, which saw them both perform at one of Nas’ shows in Shoreditch, showing the exceptional lyrical talent the UK has to offer…

Meanwhile, one of UK raps most talked about artists at the moment will soon have something new for us; J Spades is hitting the studio tonight as he announced on Twitter that he will be finishing off an exciting new track: “Studio tonight to finish up that new  ‪@REAL_JSPADES and ‪@WackaFlocka tune! ‪#Bricksquad ‪#MMMP! #MMMP2 coming soon!” As he mentioned in the tweet, his new mixtape ‘More Money More Pagans 2’ will be coming real soon.

Chip also took to Twitter to tell us when his anticipated mixtape ‘London Boy’ is due out and also revealed details on the next project that he has in store for us: ”‪#LondonBoy 25th December !!! FREE MIXTAPE #PizzaBoy feat. @MeekMill up next… Shutting the clubs DOWN!!!”

I previously filled you in on Rapper Tag UK; an online cypher that started with Mystro. The last one ended with M9 aka Melanin 9; their latest video is up now and sees Hackney MC Cyrus Malachi spit some bars. It is also Rapper Tag’s first birthday – we wish them many more years to come!

As well as K. Koke’s ‘Pure Koke Vol. 3 ‘dropping last week, the USG rapper also got airplay for his debut single ‘Turn Back’ featuring soulful singer Maverick Sabre. The track is about his struggles and samples Sting’s track ‘Shape Of My Heart,’ which Nas also used on ‘The Message’. The video will be dropping soon.

USG boss Squingy was joined by members Exo and Lefty to bring us the theme tune ‘Money On My Mind’ to the forthcoming movie ‘Fedz’. The soundtrack will also include tracks from J Spades, GiggsMargs, DVS, Joe Black and more.

South London’s Colours Miyagi has returned from a short hiatus to bring us a brand new track ‘Burn’, showing us that even though he has been away, listeners are “locked down now I’m back”. His lyricism and flow has developed into something more special; other rappers can learn a thing or two from this one.

Political Peak has dropped two tracks this week in the lead up to his ‘Dreams 2 Reality’ mixtape. ‘Wise Up’ was the first one to be heard featuring Ard Adz and Blacker. The next was ‘Dreamin’, an emotional track featuring former Sugababes member Keisha Buchanan who add a nice touch to the song with her strong vocals.

Until next Monday!

October 2, 2012

Nas – Cherry Wine ft. Amy Winehouse [ Music Video]

Here is the video to Nas’ Cherry Wine featuring the late Amy Winehouse. Nas plays host as a barman and Amy’s visuals seem to be projected against the brick wall inside the bar.

July 22, 2012

Something From Nothing: The Art Of Rap


Last night saw the European premiere of Ice-T’s highly anticipated documentary, Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap. The event was not one to be missed for any hip-hop heads and lovers of wordplay. UK rappers we saw there included Sway, Wretch 32, Jehst, K. Koke and Exo

Contributing founder of gangster rap Ice-T enlisted legends of the hip-hop scene to talk us through their thought-processes, favourite rap lyrics and how they started out in the game.

An impressive amount of artists were featured, including Chuck DImmortal TechniqueNasRun-DMCSnoop DoggEminemDougie FreshGrandmaster CazDr DreKanye WestRakimJoe BuddenMelle Mel, Common and more.

We were taken right back to the basics, with New York back-drops heavily featured in the visuals, reminding us of hip-hop’s place of birth. Ice-T then took us through to Detroit and of course, to his turf – the West Coast. Interestingly enough, the south was not featured, leaving out some key players.

The film was quite fast-paced for a documentary film, which would keep some people entertained; however I found the quick transitions quite overwhelming at times.

Regardless, the film was informative and funny. Ice-T ensured there were many moments of humour, which made the film for me. Hip-hop is known to be an egotistical form of art, so it was refreshing to see lyricists discuss their most vulnerable moments.


One cringe-worthy revelation ironically came from Kanye West. As he was interviewed, he told us about his first rap battle, which went miserably wrong when his opponent delivered the line, ‘wassup, my name is Chris and let me tell you one thing, you smell like p***’ – obviously he lost that battle!

Snoop had his normal banter in check, saying his ‘main inspiration was having two women by his side.’

Ice-T asked the rappers to spontaneously spit their favourite lyrics of all time, and of course, they had to deliver. As expected, Ice-T knew every rhyme they presented to him and often rapped along.

When talking rap essentials, a lot of the rappers agreed that their voice and delivery was an important part. Chuck D said: ‘you had to have a strong voice to cut through the systems.’ Ice-T later praised Cypress Hill for their delivery of rhymes, saying: ‘When you came out, the vocal delivery was so real.’

Salt n Pepa and MC Lyte were the only females in the film, which was a bit disappointing as I felt others could have gotten involved, such as Lauryn Hill.

Overall, the docufilm delved into interesting subjects, thankfully neglecting the money, women and bling side of 21st century rap and concerning itself more with the technicalities of the art form and the business.

As the film finished, we were treated to phenomenal performances by Melle MelChuck D, RaekwonGhostface Killah and Ice-T; it was a tremendous showcase of linguistic skill which left me simply mesmerised.

July 10, 2012

Nas – Bye Baby

Nas lets us listen to the closing track Bye Baby on his album Life Is Good. Here he opens up about his ex wife Kelis, telling the story of when he met her, the ups and downs in between, the marriage through to the messy divorce.

“No matter who you f**k, that was before me
Wanted you as my shorty since before I saw you screamin’
Hate you so much right now, should’ve saw the man in angry black women….ashes of a demon – I’m leaving.”

July 3, 2012

Nas Feat. Large Professor – Loco-Motive

Large Professor was one of the first people who helped kick start Nas’ career, here he adds vocals to the No-ID produced track Loco-Motive which will be on Life Is Good available on July 17th!

June 6, 2012

Nas & Eminem Something From Nothing: The Art Of Rap Freestyles

Ice-T takes us on an intimate journey into the heart and soul of hip-hop with the legends of rap music. This performance documentary goes beyond the stardom and the bling, to explore what goes on inside the minds, and erupts from the lips, of the grandmasters of rap. Recognized as the godfather of Gangsta rap, Ice-T is granted unparalleled access to the personal lives of the masters of this artform that he credits for saving his life. Interspersed with the performer’s insightful, touching, and often funny revelations are classic raps, freestyle rhymes, and never before heard a cappellas straight from the mouths of the creators. What emerges is a better understanding of, and a tribute to, an original American art form that brought poetry to a new generation.


May 28, 2012

Nas – Daughters

Nas releases the visuals to Daughters, a track about fatherhood told the eyes of his daughter Destiny Jones. The video tracks the father daughter relationship from the moment she was born to becoming a teenager.