Nas On “Illmatic” Anniversaries: “I’m Tired Of Celebrating It”


Nas career goes back to 1991 but it wasn’t until the release of Illmatic that he made his imprint in the rap game. The album shifted hip-hop for the better and in the past 25 years since it’s release, it’s been regarded as the greatest hip-hop albums of all time. This year, Nas celebrated the 25th anniversary of the album’s release with another performance with the National Symphony Orchestra. However, it doesn’t look like Nas will actually be partaking in any more anniversary celebrations of the album moving forward.

In an interview with Haute Living, Nas actually expressed his true feelings on the legacy of Illmatic. Now, it’s not that Nas doesn’t like the album but he explained that he’s done so much other work that he feels has been overshadowed and outweighed by the success of Illmatic. 

“I’m tired of celebrating it,” he said. “I’m grateful, but it has started to take on a life of its own. I just did the 20th anniversary with the National Symphony Orchestra five years ago and, the next thing you know, five years go by and it’s a calendar that I didn’t ask for showing me how fast time moves.”

Adding, “Twenty-five years is a lifetime. So I did another Symphony Orchestra show for Illmatic this year; I got another plaque for it. I’m very grateful—it’s so crazy—but to celebrate one album when I’ve made over 10, all the things I’ve worked on—and I’ve been working for so long—to celebrate one album over all else is corny to me. I don’t want to celebrate another Illmatic anything. I’m done. Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for appreciating that record, but it’s over.”


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