J. Cole Honors Nas at VIBE Impact Awards [VIDEO]
Last year, J. Cole released the confessional ode, ‘Let Nas Down,’ in which he recalls the day his idol, Nas, denied him a guest verse for his 2011 single, ‘Work Out.’ The two emcees would eventually team up on the remix on which Nas saluted the North Carolina native. On Friday (Jan. 24), Cole made Nas proud yet again by honoring him at the VIBE Impact Awards.
Talk about a full circle moment.
At the event, the North Carolina rhymer gave a heartfelt speech about the Queensbridge rapper. He shared with the audience a story of the first time he heard Nas’ 1996 metaphoric banger ‘I Gave You Power,’ in which he describes a gun like a human being.
An 11-year-old Cole was amazed at Nas’ lyrical ability back then. “Oh my god, this n—-’s the greatest,” he said to himself.
Cole then talked about the recording process behind ‘Born Sinner’ and how he studied Nas’ storytelling skills by printing his lyrics up and pasting them to the wall. Ultimately, it led to ‘Let Nas Down’ and the remix in which Nas offered Cole some sagely advice.
Afterward, Nas appeared on the podium and talked about his vast career and the honorary title of “Legend.”
“One thing I never want to be is mainstream,” he said. “My goal is to not be what the mainstream calls a legend. I just wanna do what I do. Legend is a big, big title. There’s enough legends out there, I’m just living.”
“Long live the idols, may they never be your rivals.” — Nasir Jones