His 1994 debut album, Illmatic, instantly went down in history as a Hip-Hop classic. He was just twenty. Since then, this soft-spoken Queensbridge emcee has gone through a couple public persona changes but this past December, he emerged victorious once more when he dropped another back-to-its-roots classic, Stillmatic. Generated by a passionate on-wax battle between him and Jay-Z, the album has flown off store shelves and continues to bring the heat. So hot, that even the NY Times had to recognize by running a front page \“Sunday Styles\” piece on the feuding rap kings of New York. Here, Nasir Jones talks exclusively and candidly to SOHH about going commercial, keeping it gully, the QB legacy and serving up the verbal beef!

How\'d you get into Hip-hop and rhyming?

In my early ages, I was always listening to it-Afrika Bambaata, Lisa Lisa and The Cult Jam, Fat Boys. I just loved it and wanted to be down.

What was it like in Queensbridge?

The entire neighborhood was into it. We just started writing rhymes, just working and practicing and trying to meet the right people to make my music. People be like \'hey that guy\'s good\' and eventually, I\'m on this guy\'s album. I made some noise and got a record deal and took it from there.

Talk a little about your classic debut, Illmatic.It was my first album and we were a part of the renaissance of new rappers in New York-me, B.I.G. and Wu-Tang. It was New York Hip-Hop with a new generation of representatives. A renaissance thing.

Why do you think people reacted so strongly to it?

They were hearing their language and their world, my generation for the first time. Hearing their world rejuvenated and told day-

Tekið af
Christmas morning smelled fresher than angel pussy - Aesop Rock