During the One Mic Hip Hop Culture Worldwide Festival this past weekend at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Nas proved he only needed one mic to sound off on the state of hip-hop.
"I don’t see enough emcees who are brave enough to be honest. I would like to see more of that," he said during the event called “A Conversation with Nas and Michael Eric Dyson.”
Nasir continued, "There’s a lot of good stuff, and there’s a lot of bad in rap. The socially conscious stuff can come off sometime as preachy, so a lot of people tend to stay away from it. It ain’t their bag. That’s not what they do. But still they kind of have some artistic responsibility to do more than what’s the latest trend."
Nas spoke to the trends in the rap game that favor party anthems over deep discussions. The Queens rapper, who celebrates the 20th anniversary of his iconic debut Illmatic next month, also called on the hip-hop community to focus more on the value of the music then the Grammy Awards, the awards show that has yet to bestow Nas with a trophy.
"The better we all become, we push each other to make the whole art form better," he said, "Then we won’t have to worry about who won the Grammy.”
Watch the full discussion below.