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REAL TALK NY: Video of Nas Performing Why You Hate the Game/ Clips of the Nas XXL Interview

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Video of Nas Performing Why You Hate the Game/ Clips of the Nas XXL Interview

Nas performing his verse from, "Why You Hate The Game," on the Game's

MTV 2 Dollar Bill Concert

XXL: So what's the sotry behind the delay of the album ?

Nas: I was overexcited….I wanted it to come out on my birthday. I wanted it to come out the day Tupac died. I wanted it to come out Halloween. And then it went to November, so it was either I was gonna come out the seventh and he rock the end of the month or end the year off. I felt like I wasn't ready for November, so let's do December. Two different months.

XXL: Do you feel the hype surrounding Jay's return takes away from you ?

Nas: Nas, it was uhh…It's not his fault. I was supposed to be ready, but I didn't feel like releasing it at the time. I didn't even do a photo shoot. I ain't do nothing. You know what I'm saying. And he was ready, so he's coming. I think, one time, we even talked about it. He said people are going to criticize him for coming and sh*t, and we laughed about it. You know, Jay is a serious dude. He needs a month to hmself, and I need a month to myself. Him coming ontime is perfect, and then I come in with the icing on the cake and end the year off. It's perfect for me. A lot of people were getting it the wrong way, but this actually worked out for me.

XXL: So wit you and Jay, "Black Republican", is -

Nas: It's on some rap sh*t. [Laughs] It's on some rap sh*t.

XXL: Were you guys in the room together when you did it ?

Nas: Yeah, heavy. No other way. I was having a slow day in the studio, and he swung by, and it turned into a party. It turned to good times cause that was our first moment. It was an easy vibe.

XXL: So you guys have recorded together, been seen on double dates together, and you joined him on tour overseas. Are you building a friendship ?

Nas: It ain't about trying to build a friendship, because, ummm… I don’t think rappers got into it to be friends. We got music to make. History to make and things to do. Honestly, I'd rather just be with K. Her and me, we ride out. Other than that, I got my homies, and I got my comrades. There's camaraderie in rap, and there's competition, and there's history to be made, and [Jay and I] understand that, and that's what it is. There's a respect thing between each other.

XXL: Speaking of Kelis. Seems like marriage is treating you well. Is it true you two might have your own reality show ?

Nas: Oh, most definitely a possibility.

XXL: yeah. I gotta tell you, I read an early copy of your baby mama's tell all book.

Nas: Ha, ha. Oh really ? Sh*t.

XXL: Pretty much.

Nas: [Laughs] Well, I've learned not to be surprised by what people do no more.

XXL: She implies that she sparked the original beef between you and Jay.

Nas: She didn't spark anything. She was an NYC girl running through the streets. We were both young, and whatever she did is her business. I was a young dude in the rap game, and I was running around and didn't have time for a family. She's gonna say what she's going to say about it. I don't really remember it. I think it's mean when you just do sh*t to play somebody, but I don't know. [Shrugs] I'm cool with whatever she wants to do. She's lying maybe she's not lying - I have no idea. God bless her.

XXL: A recurrent criticism that's been leveled against you is that you're contradictory. Like, you've been the street's disciple, thug poet, Escobar, been blinged out in the videos Diddy…..

Nas: I'm totally contradictory. I was gonna make a song called "Mr. Contradiction". Cause in essence, it means I'm human. There's not one person in the world that's not a living, walking contradiction. It's kind of crazy people say that. I think they're being harsh. What they're trying to say is worse than what the meaning is. They haven't been anywhere. They haven't walked in any real shoes. So it's just naysay and hecklers… Cause James Brown could say, "Say it loud, I'm Black and proud," and then talk about hot pants on another song. Or you know, Marvin could say. "Let's get it on," talk about freakish pleasures, whatever you want, but also talk about the world. That makes you a whole. People are so caught up with the gimmick artists, so they believing what's fake. And really it's sad. They'd rather watch the actor who makes every record the same, every image the same, ans that's cool. I don't get involved with that. Say what you want - I love being a contradiction. I might get that sh*t tattooed on me [Laughs].

XXL: Explain the thoughts behind the album title, Hip-Hop is Dead.

Nas: Yeah Hip-Hop is Dead cause America is dead culturally. I'm proud to be an American, no matter what. But Amercian culture is stale, you know wha I'm saying ? We keep regurgitating the same sh*t. And it ain't exciting. I seen it from when I was a kid watching the whole sh*t. The sh*t was exciting to me.

XXL: Hip-Hop ?

Nas: Yeah, Hip-Hop. The sh*t was exciting. But it ain't the ghetto secret no more. Kids everywhere know it. And that's what we want - we want it be heard. But now it's really corny. And I still love hip-hop, but it's like, the way the game is now, it's like, F*ck rap, get money. I don't think nobody cares about respect as an artist, because at the end of the day, everybody is just chasing the paper. So f*ck it. Hip Hop is Dead. Let's piss on it, bury the sh*t and get our money. And that's what I'm about now: Let's get our paper. F*ck hip-hop.

XXL: You don't really believe that.

Nas: No, but I'm mad. Me and hip-hop have a relationship that has nothing to do with no other rapper, no matter where you from or nothing. Every n*gga got his own personal relationship with hip-hop and this is mine. Certain muthaf*ckas will get mad on some dumb sh*t, like Oh, Nas is mad at New York. Nah, E-40 could feel like Hip-Hop is Dead because what he was listening to ain't cracking no more. Common feel mad' cause what he was listening to ain't hot no more. Jeezy might be mad cuz what he used to love ain't hot no more.Who knows what anybody feels. This is my feeling. And every n*gga can put out their own version of Hip-Hop Is Dead if they want.Or Hip-Hop is alive or Hip Hop is committing suicide-whatever the f*ck yu want.
posted by CHINKYIZE of Sohh. Go buy the new XXL for the full interview