Nas Performs At Hot 97 Secret Show In New York
Nas continues to ride the tsunami wave of support for his just-released 10th album Life Is Good and last night he took it back to his roots with a secret show in the heart of New York City.
Presented by radio station HOT 97, the private event was held at a dingy venue called Tammany Hall on the Lower East Side. Media, VIPs, label execs and selected fans crammed into the space (with temperatures bordering on sweltering at times) to catch the re-energized MC at his best, performing cuts from his breakout debut (on Main Source‘s 1991 hit “Live At The Barbeque”) all the way up to his current project. He selected the Life Is Good tracks on a whim (“let’s try that chronological order thing,” he said to his DJ, my Invasion Radio co-host Green Lantern), choosing to perform instant classics like “Loco-Motive” and “Bye Baby” for the first time.
Prior to “Loco-Motive” Nas gave an impassioned speech to the obviously hip-hop savvy crowd, pleading with us to take our music back from the pop world we once influenced so heavily. “This is music that I just put together, I’m praying it will be the inspiration for my brothers that’s in the rap game,” he said earnestly. “I think a lot of us are confused about who we are. It’s important we stay ten toes down at all time. F*ck pop, f*ck all that shit. We don’t imitate pop, pop imitates us! So that’s why we go back to the gutter. We’re number one in about five or six countries around the world. And none of this is pop. Stick to your guns, do what you do.”
Nas, 38, also rocked the stage with his longtime collaborator AZ, 40 (both as fresh-faced as they were in their 90s golden days) wowing the crowd with a string of favorites, including performing “Mo Money, Mo Murder” for the first time.
Life Is Good is available on iTunes and in stores now.