Born to Use Mics

Born to Use Mics

Reading Nas's Illmatic

Book - 2010
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Baker & Taylor
Academic essays reflect on the 1994 album Illmatic by Nasir "Nas" Jones, covering topics ranging from jazz history to gender.

Perseus Publishing
At the age of nineteen, Nasir “Nas” Jones began recording tracks for his debut album—and changed the music world forever. Released in 1994, Illmatic was hailed as an instant masterpiece and has proven one of the most influential albums in hip-hop history. With its close attention to beats and lyricism, and riveting first-person explorations of the isolation and desolation of urban poverty, Illmatic was pivotal in the evolution of the genre.

In Born to Use Mics, Michael Eric Dyson and Sohail Daulatzai have brought together renowned writers and critics including Mark Anthony Neal, Marc Lamont Hill, Eddie S. Glaude, Jr., and many others to confront Illmatic song by song, with each scholar assessing an individual track from the album. The result is a brilliant engagement with and commentary upon one of the most incisive sets of songs ever laid down on wax.

The best and brightest writers of the hip-hop generation reflect upon the era’s landmark album: Nas’sIllmatic

Publisher: New York : Basic Civitas Books, [2010]
Copyright Date: ©2010
ISBN: 9780465002115
Branch Call Number: 782.4216 NAS BORN
Characteristics: xi, 308 pages ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Dyson, Michael Eric
Daulatzai, Sohail


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Nov 17, 2015

As a person who is interested in the Hip Hop movement and culture, I found this book very helpful in unfolding the meanings in one of the most famous albums in hip hop. The authors do a great job in analyzing the metaphors and the lifestyle of residents of urban neighborhoods, such as Queensbridge, New York. I recommend this book to those who are fans of Nas' work as well as those who are curious or interested in the Hip Hop culture.


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