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Rap Legend Nas Wins First GRAMMY Award

Rap Legend Nas Wins First GRAMMY Award

Nasir Jones, or known more by his stage name, Nas, finally claimed his first GRAMMY last night for “best rap album” (March 14th, 2021).

Nas first reached an international audience with his track ‘Halftime’ when it was put into 1992’s Zebrahead soundtrack. It wasn’t until two years later, in 1994 when poet and rhyme-master Nas released his first full-length album while signed to Columbia records Illmatic. The album soared through the charts and went platinum, featuring tracks ‘It Ain’t Hard To Tell,’ ‘The World Is Yours,’ and ‘One.’ Then 1996 brought the breakthrough double-platinum It Was Written (#1 R&B for 7 weeks, #1 pop for 4 weeks), with Nas’ first major crossover singles ‘Street Dreams’ and ‘If I Ruled the World (Imagine That).’ Success continued with the double-platinum I Am in 1999 (again #1 pop and #1 R&B), with the chart singles ‘Nas Is Like,’ ‘Hate Me Now (featuring Puff Daddy)’, and ‘You Won’t See Me Tonight (featuring Aaliyah)’. His 2012 album, Life is Good earned him 4 Grammy nominations including “Rap Album of the Year” and is certified RIAA gold. However, he didn’t come home with the award until the 2021 event with King’s Disease.

A History of Hip-Hop and Fashion, as Told by Nas - The New York Times
Image Source: Matt Salacuse for The New York Times Style Magazine.

Through his stellar career, Nas has featured on many crossover hits by some massive names. Such as fellow rapper Mobb Deep with ‘It’s Mine’ in 1999 and J-Lo’s ‘I’m Gonna Be Alright’ in 2002. More recently, Nas has performed alongside Jhene Aiko in 2020 with ’10K Hours’ and many many more.

In the summer of 2020, Nas released his first album in two years King’s Disease. The album was entirely produced by Hit-Boy (Grammy-winning record producer who has also worked for JAY-Z, Beyoncé, and Travis Scott), and Gabriel with “G Code” Zardes serving as the albums co-executive producer. This was the album that scored the Crown Heights, New York-born rapper his first successful Grammy nomination.

The now 47-year-old is known for his charitable work, regally donating to charities and giving belongings and clothes to friends and family. On top of this and his music career, Nas has pursued an acting venture. It began with his co-starring role (alongside DMX) in 1998’s cult classic crime drama Belly, a film by director Hype Williams (with whom Nas has done several music videos). Most recently, he was the executive producer of the 2016 Netflix series The Get Down.

The Get Down' Canceled by Netflix - Variety
Image Courtesy of Netflix, The Get Down

The series is one season long with 11 episodes and tells the story set in 1977 South Bronx with six teens trying to make waves with a wild new sound.

Nas is also the co-founder of Mass Appeal Records which has been running since May 2014 and includes artists such as Kiing Shooter, DJ Shadow, and Black Milk on their roster. Nas’s recent activity includes the release of the music video for ’27 Summers.’

King’s Disease is available to buy and stream across platforms and we love it!! A portion of the merchandise proceeds for each sale goes to charity so why not treat yourself to some here.

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Hungry for more news from this years GRAMMYs? Check out more of our award show articles here!

Featured Image Courtesy of STEVE GRANITZ

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