J.Cole Says Nas Was Like A Father Figure For Him Growing Up
Over the weekend, veteran hip hop lyricist Nas was honored with VIBE Magazine’s #VibeImpact Award and none other than his biggest fan J.Cole got to present his self-professed “idol” with the award.
Cole, who is well documented in letting the world know that Nas was his ultimate rap role model while making his moves into the music industry, gave a heartfelt speech before a crowd of supporters to introduce the man of the hour. Check out a few excerpts from his speech below:
On Nas being the poster child for hip hop lyricists:
Who’s your favorite rapper says a lot about you. The rapper you name tells me right away what you prioritize, do you prefer the flashy rap, fantasy lifestyle music, trap music, gangster sh*t, back pack; because hip-hop is broad. I believe that when the genre’s at it’s best, when hip hop is flourishing the most, there’s something out there for everybody.
To each it’s own but, me, once I fell in love with the art form of rhyming it was clear to see what I was drawn to. It was introspection, story-telling, emotion, and lyricism; those were the things I could see I was falling in love with as a fan and somebody that wanted to do this. During my early romance with hip hop, there was one rapper who was and still is the poster child for all those qualities I just named and that’s Nasir Jones.
On Jay Z and Nas beefing back in the day:
When that whole rap battle happened, you know you had a side if you were a rap fan and I used to ride for my man. We used to get in bus arguments and damn near fighting. I’m from a younger generation, I was in middle school. That’s how I used to ride for you [Nas] after I heard that song.
On Nas being a father figure for him:
Beyond pushing me and probably a million other kids out there that wanted to be rappers and artists. Even those people that just wanted to be inspired in life. He hit us with life lessons and insight on how to maneuver through this world as young black men in America.
I didn’t grow up with my father, even my stepfather, I told y’all about him he wasn’t a real father figure, just like mom’s boyfriend that was around. I looked to rappers for insight and him and Pac was giving me the most insight on what it’s like to be young and black in this world and what to watch out for.
You can check out J.Cole’s entire speech in the video below.