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An Open Letter To The Greatest, Nas

Written by Dominic Wright, May 13th, 2017, at 5:05 p.m. Tweet to @Groovycap

Dear Nas,

Fourteen years ago was the first time your music was played into my ears. Sitting in a room with adults, who were older than I, got the chance to appreciate your music long before. About three years after, the song I Can, was played everywhere. Including school. From classroom parties and early morning rides to school, to Kindergarten moving up ceremonies as well as graduations. The name Nas became more than just a household name, it was iconic.

Through the adolescent years, your music spoke to me on a deeper level. One may even call it being an existentialist, while others call it being a teenager. Walking through the neighborhood with both earbuds in, humming to the song you featured Lauryn Hill If I Ruled The World. Truly, it was my favorite song at the time, being that I could relate to it. The opening is what captured me, the existentialism that many people living in urban areas take on. At the beginning, Nas says

“Life, I wonder. Will it take me under? I don’t know.”

All day I would even sing the bridge of the song, the part where Lauryn Hill says

“And then we’ll walk right up to the sun, Hand in hand. We’ll walk right up to the sun. We won’t land.”

In high school, when I would wake up in the morning, the first song I played was Nas Is Like. Maybe it was due to the way I visualized the traits you explained in the song that you possessed. Or it could be that I saw myself within the lyrics. Similar to how J Cole described your lyrics in his song, Let Nas Down. Within that song, Cole said

“I used to print out Nas’ raps and tape ’em up on my wall. My homies thought they was words, but it was pictures I saw.”

Even till this day, the number one song that plays in my head is, The World Is Yours. If I had to describe this song in one word, it would be, empowering. Whether I am at school or walking within the numerous neighborhoods of NYC this song plays in my head. I feel an uplift while the song plays, especially at the end when you say

“Yeah, a’ight? To everybody in Queens, the foundation (It’s yours!) The world is yours.”

There is absolutely no doubt, that you had an impact on artists who are new/old. Not only were you impactful to the artists in hip-hop but, to the children within the communities you inspired. Your music along with your impact will forever remain timeless. In the minds of hip-hop fans to the young child looking up at the sky at a blimp saying “The world is yours”.

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