It’s been four years since New York rapper Nas released a solo album, so his new record Life Is Good serves as a re-introduction to his fans. In a phone interview with ANDPOP’s Azra Kassam, Nas talked about collaborating with Amy Winehouse and his best prank ever (it involves a blow up doll).
Life is Good was his daily mantra before becoming his album title: These last few years have been difficult for Nas, particularly because of a high profile divorce from singer Kelis. But he rose above it all and bared his soul for his eleventh studio album Life Is Good. “Instead of looking at all the losses, I started looking at them as blessings,” he said. “I started saying ‘Life is Good’ and it became a daily mantra… It was the obvious thing to do when it was time to title my album.”
So there you have it kids, the next time you’re feeling blue, try creating a positive, daily mantra for yourself. You can thank Nas later.
He and Amy Winehouse share the same birthday: Nas recently released “Cherry Wine,” a collaboration with Amy Winehouse, which appears on Life is Good. He said it was amazing to collaborate with Winehouse before her tragic death. “She was an incredible artist, she was a pure artist, and she was someone who loved music more than most people I meet,” he said. “She had a spirit that was about being honest and being raw and not caring about what anybody thinks.” In fact, Nas said when he was putting “Cherry Wine” together, he felt Winehouse’s presence as an angel.
Coincidentally, both Nas and Winehouse shared the same birthday, Sept. 14, though he was born ten years earlier.
Listen to it here:
His best prank involved a blow up doll: Read more…
“Sweet Life” — Frank Ocean
A few days ago, Frank Ocean posted an extremely vulnerable story on his blog about his first time falling in love with a man — an unprecedented step for a newcomer, or really any musician, in the hip hop industry. Since then, there has been a flurry of tweets, statuses, blog posts, and the like, regarding the R&B crooner’s unexpected move. However, Ocean has already moved on, releasing a new track from his upcoming, highly anticipated album Channel Orange, called “Sweet Life.” Produced by Pharell, the retro inspired track lays a jazzy keyboard over a whimsical bassline to complement Ocean’s smooth harmonies. Channel Orange drops on July 17th.
“Cherry Wine” — Nas and Amy Winehouse
Amy Winehouse fans will be happy to know they can hear a brand new track featuring the songstress who suddenly passed away last year. “Cherry Wine,” off rapper Nas’ upcoming album Life is Good, was recorded in 2008 when Nas and Winehouse were working on a different track, “Like Smoke.” The song stayed hidden for four years and Nas himself wasn’t keen on releasing the record. Thank goodness he decided to go ahead with it, because it really is a gem. The oldschool beat, Winehouse’s laidback vocals, and Nas’ on-par rhymes are beautiful together. The only complaint I have about the record is that Winehouse will never be able to perform it live. A bittersweet release, but a great first posthumous jam for Winehouse. Catch Cherry Wine on Nas’ Life is Good, released on July 17.
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