Ex-rival rappers Nas and Jay-Z are celebrated as two of the most relevant and consistent MCs from the 1990s. They are two of the greatest rappers in history — both came out of Brooklyn, New York, and both are contenders (beyond a reasonable doubt) for the GOAT title.
Nas' rap album Kings Disease III was released on November 11 and debuted at number 10 on the Billboard 200 charts with 29,000 first-week earned units. The Queens MC is now tied with Jay-Z for the most top 10 albums released by a rap artist at 16. Nas' second studio album, It Was Written, marked his first top ten album to debut at number one after his debut work of genius Illmatic, which featured classic tracks like “N.Y. State of Mind.” His six number ones include I Am, Life Is Good, Untitled, Hip Hop Is Dead, and The Firm: The Album.
Jay-Z currently holds the title of the most number one albums by a solo act. Additionally, with incredible records like The Blueprint, Watch the Throne with Ye (formerly known as Kanye West), and a new album with Beyoncé, Everything Is Love, Hov has solidified his place in the annals of Hip-Hop history.
Nas made mention of Jay on Kings Disease III's "Thun" with the line, "No beef or rivals, they playing 'Ether' on TIDAL Brothers can do anything when they decide to,In a Range Rover, dissecting bars from 'Takeover' /Sometimes I text Hova like, 'nigga, this ain't over'."
In a recent interview with Trevor Noah, Nas spoke about his legendary feud with Hov. "When I released the tracklist the other day, he released a picture with all of his Grammys," Nas said. "Shout out to him." While the era of massive diss tracks may be behind us, with artists like Drake and Eminem getting into petty squabbles, it seems that this is one epic beef that will stand the test of time.
Nas also mentioned releasing three installments of the King's Disease series and the surprise album Magic with producer Hit-Boy. "We slipped in four albums in two years," he said. "We started the first one in 2020 when the pandemic hit, I was scared to come outside and Hit-Boy was making beats. There was nothing else to do."
On November 11th, 2022, Nas released the official video for "Michael & Quincy" from KD III.