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  • Writer's pictureVolume 82 Magazine

Nas & Wu-Tang Clan Proved That They Still Lead Hip Hop on the N.Y. State of Mind Tour

The New York State of Mind tour was reportedly over the top! But of course, we never expected anything less from rap legends Nas, Wu-Tang Clan, and Busta Rhymes! Every artist in this show's lineup graduated from hip-hop's schools of writing lyrics, making beats, showing originality, and shaping culture.

Here are some snapshots of these headliners' careers:

Wu-Tang Clan appeared on the music scene in the early 90s with one of the most unorthodox styles of rap ever seen. Their music fused hard-core lyrics with spirituality, science, Asian heritage, metaphorical lyrics, and martial arts. The Staten Island band consists of ten dissimilar members (RZA, GZA, Inspectah Deck, U-God, Ghostface Killah, Method Man, Raekwon, Masta Killa, Cappadonna, and the late Ol' Dirty Bastard), who range from intellectually gifted to poetic and rugged creatives.

Nas, one of hip hop's thought-provoking and intellectual rappers, hails from Queens, NY. His debut album, Illmatic, was highly successful and inducted into the Library of Congress's National Recording Registry. He also performed Illmatic live on its 20th anniversary with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

One of the most popular songs of his career, "If I Ruled the World," featuring Lauryn Hill, explained his vision of how the world would operate under his reign. This song discussed freedom, mass incarceration, and oppression; he explained: "Cause you could have all the chips, be poor or rich; still, nobody want a nigga havin' shit."... "Feel the wind breeze in West Indies, I'd make Coretta Scott-King mayor o'the cities and reverse themes to Willies, it sounds foul, but every girl I meet to go downtown, I'd open every cell in Attica send em to Africa."

Then there's Busta Rhymes, originally from the 90's trio, Leaders of the New School. Busta Rhymes tapered away from the eclectic group to become a solo artist. His high-energy performances and monogram sound has kept him relevant in hip-hop since embarking on his solo career. Busta was nominated for 12 Grammy Awards and has successfully crossed over into acting.

So, we say cheers to hip-hop and rap! Cheers to these legends for still standing, being relevant, and performing great music!

Salute, Kings!

Photo Credits: Nas, Busta Rhymes, Wu-Tang Clan, Real Ghost Face Killah, and GZA via Instagram


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