Hip-hop collectively peed its pants when Def Jam A&R Lenny S. uploaded a photo of Jay-Z, Timbaland, Justin Timberlake and Nas kicking it at Swizz Beatz’s Jungle City studios earlier this month. Nas, who is pictured clutching a glass of Henny, helped add some color to the already-classic candid.
“It’s Rat Pack-ing,” Nas told VIBE yesterday afternoon (June 27), alluding to Frank Sinatra’s crew of kingpins. “We were definitely recording. Magna Carta was going down. Some Justin Timberlake new album stuff was in the next room. Timbaland. D'USSE. Hennessey. Good times.”
Will the work and play captured in Lenny S.’s lens yield any monster collaborations for Jay-Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail or Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience Part 2?
“I think you’re going to see me on a project, maybe two projects,” says Nas, before adding a cryptic “but who knows?”
Still hot off 2012’s worshipped Life Is Good and his torch-passing response to J. Cole's "Let Nas Down," the Queensbridge rapper is more certain about the status of his next LP, of which he’d announced via his Twitter account (@Nas) that he’d reveal the title in May. Two months later, the world continues to wait.
“I’ve been swamped with so much I didn’t even have the time,” he says, still tight-lipped about the album’s title. Nas says he’s begun the recording process, yet he’s still in the early stages.
“There are so many things that ain’t been said; so many things that I’ve seen that I ain’t never told,” says Nas. “I’m so excited to tell this story because it’s real shit and it’s needed. I hate to sound like that, because we all sound like we think we’re big shit. But fuck it—it’s needed.”
While there’s no anticipated release date for Nas’ new project, Magna Carta Holy Grail will be released on July 4 and The 20/20 Experience Part 2 is scheduled for a Sept. 30 drop date. —John Kennedy