On Friday (December 24), Nas and Hit-Boy successfully delivered the follow-up to their King’s Disease 2 album via their surprise project Magic.
Throughout the nine-song release, Nas has a lyrical field day, firing off shots at unnamed rappers on “Meet Joe Black” and claiming his spot as the GOAT of Hip Hop on tracks such as “40-16” among others.
Of the countless bombs Nasir drops over Hit-Boy’s production throughout Magic, his bars on “Wu for the Children” suggest the 48-year-old rapper has both reservations for his past, and aspirations future as an MC.
“Listen to The Manhattan’s, Queens to Brooklyn, oh what a feelin’/I shoulda had Grammy’s when Ol’ Dirty said “Wu for the children,” Nas raps.
While in the process of reminiscing and airing out his dirty laundry Nas goes on to cosign J. Cole, Drake and Kendrick as the heirs to the throne of Hip Hop.
“Shoulda did that remix verse on ‘Gimme the Loot’ for Biggie/Me, JAY-Z, and Frank White is like Cole, Drizzy, and Kenny,” he continued.
It’s clear that JAY-Z has also always been very keen on maintaining the hierarchy of New York rap royalty also, and even spoke about it on his 1997 track “Where I’m From” rapping, “I’m from where niggas pull your card, and argue all day about / Who’s the best MCs, Biggie, Jay-Z or Nas?.”
During his appearance on media content creator Miss Info’s Spotify podcast The Bridge: 50 Years of Hip Hop, featuring Jeezy, Nas revealed Hip Hop Is Dead was largely directed at New York rappers.
“I didn’t think that certain people would think I’m talking about them,” he began. “Oh nah, I’m talking about mainly New York! Mainly New York. I’m talking to everybody, but I didn’t explain it thoroughly enough.”
It also appears that Drizzy is on the same page with Nas, according to Hip Hop legend Ed Lover, who recalled a conversation with Drake from early on in his career in which the 6 God proclaimed his ultimate goals as an artist.
“We had a nice conversation for the 40-minute flight and I asked him ‘What is your ultimate goal?” Ed Lover said. “When you’re done in your career and you’re an OG, how do you want to be remembered?’ And he said, ‘I just want to be remembered in the same breath as JAY-Z, Biggie, Nas, Rakim, [Big Daddy] Kane and all of them.”
Stream Magic, home to guest appearances from A$AP Rocky and DJ Premier below.