Rapper/Producer/Actor How to become a hip hop legend in your own time: Grow up in Queensbridge, New York. (It helps if your father is jazz legend Olu Dara.) Drop a killer verse on the Main Source's 1991 "Live At the BBQ." Record the standout single, “Halftime,” on the Zebrahead soundtrack in 1992, earning comparisons to Rakim. Seal the deal two years later by releasing a seminal, game-changing, narrative masterpiece of a debut album called Illmatic. Whether battling Jay-Z or declaring that “Hip Hop is Dead” Nas has never shied away from controversy. His 2012 masterpiece, Life is Good, garnered his fourth Grammy nomination for Best Rap Album. Besides his prolific musical output, Nasir Jones has also appeared in films like Belly and Hawaii Five-O. He will co-star in the upcoming musical drama Black Nativity, alongside Angela Bassett and Forest Whitaker.

The Latest on Nas

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Illmatic : Where Are They Now?

Nas's debut was backed by an all-star lineup.

Boldy James Says He's Not Signed to Nas's Mass Appeal

Detroit rapper denies reports of a new deal with God's Son.

Screen Time with Nas at “Time Is Illamatic” Tribeca Premiere

Highlights: The rap legend’s documentary debut! (4/17/2014)

The Making of Illmatic

Pete Rock, Large Pro and more take a trip down memory lane. (4/17/2014)

Music News: Teedra Moses on Illmatic: ‘It Should Be a Course in College.’

The R&B songstress recalls being a closeted Nas fan. (4/17/2014)

Joe on Illmatic: ‘Some of the Best Lyrics Ever’

The R&B singer praises Nas’s lyrical prowess. (4/17/2014)
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