Nas Brings A Taste of New York To Yahoo! Wireless
REVIEW: Hip-Hop pioneer takes it back to the old skool in East London…
Nas delivered a bass thumping, crowd busting performance at this years’ Yahoo! Wireless Festival, taking the festival back to ’94 with his multi-platinum award-winning rap classics, cranking up the crowd and triggering a wave of nodding heads and Hip-Hop grinding in the process.
Feeling: In spite of the sweltering temperatures going beyond 30 degrees, the crowd showed no signs of flagging when Nas, one of the forefathers' of Hip-Hop, broke out on the main stage with his bass-heavy beats and distinctive rap sound. Bringing together the multi-cultural mix of both younger and older heads, the crowd were in the zone from the outset, vibing out in a mass of bodies, with everyone bouncing, jigging and head nodding in sync with the beat, while the more die hard fans spat out his lyrics and verses.
The Look: Repping his look, Nas wore understated black jeans and T-shirt, black and white trainers and what looked to be an impressive sized gold chain, mostly hidden from view under his shirt, as well as a watch and gold bracelets on both wrists. Supported by his DJ and guitarist, Nas hopped around the stage, slapping the beat and feeding off the crowd and his musical arrangement while living out the moment.
Tunes: Nas did not disappoint on his set list, playing mostly one classic after the next, including Hate Me Now, Imagine That, I Can (which he dedicated to his daughter and “real dads”), Street Dreams, Life’s A B*tch, Made You Look, as well as plenty of other crowd pleasers.
Special Guests: With his rap credentials blowing most lyricists out the water, Nas needed no other back up, but he did take the opportunity to make a tribute to the late Back To Black singer, Amy Winehouse, who he had collaborated with on their track Cherry Wine, playing out their tune and reaching out to the fans, saying: “R.I.P. Amy, I see you baby”.
Banter: Throughout the show, Nas’ overwhelming sense of appreciation and spirituality shone through, opening up his set by saying: “Life is good, life is a blessing” and reminding the fans that “the world is yours” and encouraging the crowd to sing along and get involved. Expressing his appreciation to the audience the rap maestro said: “this is unreal” and told his fans how “at home” he was in London. Bringing the gig to an end, Nas wrapped up the occasion, telling the festival: “You only get one life, live it to the fullest, life’s a b*tch, thank you all, that’s my time, peace ‘n’ love.”
Sweat Factor: At well over 30 degrees things were a little moist, but it made a welcomed relief from the waterproofs and wellies of recent summers gone by.
Summary: It’s not often that appreciators of Hip-Hop get the privilege of seeing someone as influential and pioneering as Nas, made all the more special by the setting of an outdoor festival at the height of a rare British summer. As the crowd dissipated, one awe-inspired fan best summed up the occasion, telling his mate: “That was my money's worth, man’s a genius, I’m done.”
By Daniel Coutts @mtvuknews
Watch Yahoo! Wireless 2013: The Best Bits Saturday, August 10 at 11pm on MTV Music and MTV Live HD.