With everything from upcoming film projects to new collaborations, it’s undeniable—Nas has been putting in work. Big releases are on the horizon with Mass Appeal Records, along with his growing role as a film producer. Originally founded in 2014, Nas launched Mass Appeal Records with Peter Bittenbender. “I’m excited to be a part of creating and supporting future careers and legacy artists, promoting love and finding new genius to help the world. I’m going to be as involved as I need to be, but I also want to be respectful of the art and give artists the space they need to grow and become themselves,” Nas told Billboard Magazine. Since then, artists like Run the Jewels, Fashawn and Bishop Nehru have signed to the label. In addition to being a stand-alone independent label, Mass Appeal also serves as a street style magazine publication under the same name.
Recently, Mass Appeal just announced that they will be putting out J Dilla’s long-awaited vocal album, “The Diary” on April 15th. The album is comprised of unreleased material that Dilla had planned on dropping back in 2002. Adding even more fuel to the fire, Snoop Dogg, Pete Rock, Madlib and Bilal are some of the featured artists on the project. This upcoming release has been highly anticipated, especially after the artist’s passing in 2006 due to lupus. Fans can check out the first track, “The Introduction” and pre-order the album through iTunes.
Earlier this month, Nas spoke out against police brutality alongside Usher and Bibi Bourelly. The artists released a poignant single entitled “Chains”, featuring a haunting music video. The black-and-white aesthetic sends viewers an emotional message, protesting the alarming waves of injustice.
When it comes to film, Nas has hardly paused for a second. Last year, he performed the track “Bridging the Gap”, as part of the soundtrack for Creed. Dedicated to hip hop culture, Nas also served as a producer for Fresh Dressed, a documentary following the evolution of urban fashion, and Shake the Dust, a documentary highlighting b-boys from third world countries around the globe. In addition to producing the soundtrack for The Land, he also worked as an executive producer. The critically acclaimed film feature Erykah Badu and was recently screened at this year’s Sundance festival.
What’s next for Nas? Joined by Atmosphere and Stephen “Raggy” Marley, Nas will be headlining the Blaze ‘N’ Glory Festival on June 4th in San Bernardino, CA. But until then, catch his latest track with French Montana. “Figure it Out” just dropped on his recent mixtape, Wave Gods, also featuring Kanye West. Cited by many as one of the greatest of all time, it’s a guarantee that there’s even more set in store for Nas on the horizon.
Written by Jade Nicolette