157+ Best Nas Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, known professionally as Nas, is an American rapper, songwriter, entrepreneur, and investor. Profoundly inspirational Nas quotes will encourage growth in life, make you wiser and broaden your perspective.

If you’re searching for famous rap quotes that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of quotes from Kid Cudi, powerful Jaden Smith quotes and famous Pitbull quotes.

Famous Nas Quotes

You can’t please everybody. You’d be crazy if you’re trying to. So take some time out to do some things for yourself. – Nas

The things that I have said when I was young and curious about whatever the subject matter was, I respect those – those are growing pains. Even if you make mistakes, I go back to those things, my not-so-great moments because those are my truest moments; those are my human moments. I’m not even mad at the things I said that were a little dicey. – Nas

No idea is original, there’s nothing new under the sun, it’s never what you do, but how it’s done – Nas

Turnin’ nothin’ into somethin’ is God work, and you get nothin’ without struggle and hard work. – Nas

Working with great people makes you great; you learn a lot and it also gives you the experience and confidence to move on with your own career. – Nas

Use your own intuition. You are tomorrow. – Nas

Divorce can be crazy. Man, if you’re happy… Love is a beast, man. Hold on. Be prepared for any way it may go, and be honest. – Nas

Mind’s in another world thinking how can we exist through the facts – Nas

I’ve gone through too much, from beefs to divorce to my mom passing which I always expressed in my music, so there’s not album that sticks out as more important than the other to me. – Nas

Street’s disciple, my raps are trifle. I shoot slugs from my brain just like a rifle. – Nas

To me, creatively challenging myself is my version of owning the Nets. – Nas

Africa has been going through so much for so many years; it’s time that it stands up the way other nations are standing up. – Nas

Business, endorsements and things of that nature, I got into it kinda naturally. Those ventures materialised as a direct result of things that I was actually doing; all the partnerships have been organic and not necessarily etched out plans for monetary gain. – Nas

I love the art world, I love art galleries, I love what it means – I love art. – Nas

I’m proud to be an American, no matter what. But Amercian culture is stale, you know wha I’m saying ? We keep regurgitating the same sht. And it ain’t exciting. I seen it from when I was a kid watching the whole sht. The sh*t was exciting to me. – Nas

I’m the young city bandit, hold myself down singlehanded For murder raps, I kick my thoughts alone, get remanded Born alone, die alone, no crew to keep my crown or throne I’m deep by sound alone, caved inside in a thousand miles from home – Nas

I got the opportunity to meet people all over the world. Brilliant women, tall women, short women, slim women, thick women, you name it. But, I don’t meet them. I have the opportunities to and it’s a little bit – I’m a little shy, so I don’t meet them and I don’t know who’s right for me. – Nas

Every time I get in the studio, I feel like I wanna have some fun. My fun is not doing the easy work. My fun is doing what’s me. – Nas

I’m a firm believer that we all meet up in eternity Just hope the big man show me some courtesy. – Nas

I have no tattoos that I regret – I have had some that I have had changed according to how my life was. – Nas

I’m out for presidents to represent me (Say what?) I’m out for dead presidents to represent me. – Nas

If you really believe in yourself and your music that much, you’re gonna do your thing, regardless what people say. – Nas

The Chinamen built the railroad, the Indians saved the Pilgrim, And in return, the Pilgrim killed ’em. They call it it Thanksgiving, I call your holiday ‘hell-day.’ – Nas

You got a handful of great guys – Ne-Yo, R. Kelly, Usher. You have a handful of great female artists. But for the most part the music world’s changing and change is good. You have to make adjustments if you want to survive in that world. – Nas

You a slave to a page in my rhyme book. – Nas

Let the music diffuse all the tension. – Nas

All fatherhood is very important because single mothers shouldn’t have to raise sons or daughters; they need that help. – Nas

But whats it all worth, cant take it when you under this earth Rich men died and tried, but none of it worked They just rob your grave, Id rather be alive and paid Before my numbers called, historys made Somell fall, but I rise, thug or die Makin choices, that determine my future under the sky To rob steal or kill, Im wondering why Its a dirty game, is any man worthy of fame? Much to success to ya, even if you wish me the opposite Sooner or later we’ll all see who the prophet is. – Nas

I know i can, be what i wanna be, if i work hard at it, I’ll be where i wanna be – Nas

I’m just flowing through, when I see things, I talk about ’em. And it’s cool. I don’t want any title. I just say what I say, and hopefully somebody gets it. I’m not perfect, and I’m just here and trying to make a dollar, and being real at the same time. – Nas

Every great person educates themselves. – Nas

The whole thing is, do as much as you can, when you possibly can, and don’t stress. – Nas

I never sleep, cause sleep is the cousin of death. – Nas

Rule No. 1 is you can’t be fake. If you’re fake, you become a gimmick and you’re selling a gimmick; a little gimmick is cool, this is entertainment. But when you base your stuff on mostly real stuff, you never run out of it because every day is a different adventure. – Nas

But uhh, a thug changes, and love changes and best friends become strangers, word up – Nas

If I ruled the world Imagine that… – Nas

I’m never gonna die, never heard of death, energy can never be destroyed only the flesh, so when you try to murder me with bullets to the head this is why you can’t kill me nigg*z, I’m already dead. – Nas

I just enjoy life now. I just enjoy every morning I get to wake up. – Nas

There’s not one person in the world that’s not a living, walking contradiction. – Nas

Whats up with your motto? Will you lead? Will you follow? – Nas

I talk about Africa and its meaning, being the birthplace of man and all that great history that’s been erased and even hidden. I think it’s my duty to be proud and to bring about the conversation that allows us to talk about the great history of my people. – Nas

Life is short is what some nigg*z said; not if you measure life – by how one lives and what he did. – Nas

Speak what I want, I don’t care what y’all feel. ‘Cause I’m my own master, my Pop told me be your own boss. Keep integrity at every cost. – Nas

Big L scared me to death. When I heard that on tape, I was scared to death. I was like there’s no way I can compete if this is what I gotta compete with. – Nas

I’ve been lucky enough to reach a place where I can speak what’s in my heart, and people know that it comes from a real place; I don’t have to worry about doing what someone’s not doing – I can do me. – Nas

My duration’s infinite, money-wise or physiology. – Nas

Hip-hop is the streets. Hip-hop is a couple of elements that it comes from back in the days… that feel of music with urgency that speaks to you. It speaks to your livelihood and it’s not compromised. It’s blunt. It’s raw, straight off the street – from the beat to the voice to the words. – Nas

I don’t meditate. Silence is golden though. – Nas

I don’t go out unless I’m working. My quality time is when I’m doing nothing. – Nas

Much success to you, even if you wish me the opposite. – Nas

You have to keep your vision clear, cause only a coward lives in fear. – Nas

I never brag, how real i keep it, cause thats the best secret. – Nas

Beyond the walls of intelligence, life is defined – Nas

Don’t ever give up on yourself. Keep pushing because the change of guards is what life’s all about. […] You’ve always got to stick with whatever you’re into because you’re day is going to come. You’re day is destined. If you walk away from that, whether it be from fear or whether you’re just giving up. […] The greatest sin is fear and giving up. – Nas

You lose money chasing women, never lose women chasing money… – Nas

If you scared to take chances, you’ll never have the answers… – Nas

Everything will eventually come to an end, So try to savor the moment, cause time flies, don’t it? The beauty of life, you gotta make it last for the better, Cause nothin’ lasts forever. – Nas

It’s a thin line between paper and hate, Friends and snakes, nine millis and thirty-eights, Hell or the pearly gates…I was destined to come, Predicted, blame God, He blew breath in my lungs. – Nas

How can you lose when you’re doing you? – Nas

No temporary chaos is worth your sanity. – Nas

My success symbolizes loyalty, great friends, Dedication, hard work, routine builds character. In a world full of snakes, rats and scavengers – Nas

For my hustlers, here’s some motivation: He who has begun is half done. – Nas

Some seek fame cause they need validation, Some say hating is confused admiration. – Nas

Play it cool, that’s the old school rule man. – Nas

What you base your happiness around? Material, women, and large paper? That means you inferior, not major. – Nas

You are who you associate with. Look around at your five closest friends and that’s who you are. If you don’t want to be that person, you know what you gotta do. – Nas

If the truth is told, the youth can grow Then learn to survive until they gain control Nobody says you have to be gangstas, hoes Read more learn more, change the globe – Nas

Just sitting in silence is one of the best things a man can do. – Nas

Once you make it to your point of making it, you’ll appreciate the struggle. – Nas

I’ve learned not to be surprised by what people do no more. – Nas

Don’t speak to fools, they scorn the wisdom of your words. – Nas

I think hip-hop could help rebuild America, once hip-hoppers own hip-hop… We are our own politicians, our own government, we have something to say. We’re warriors. Soldiers. – Nas

No one’s promised anything. You could have the biggest record on radio and sell no records. – Nas

Unfortunately, man, a lot of places in America have to deal with unnecessary violence. Somebody like me who knows it firsthand and could relate… I had a best friend killed, plenty other friends killed. I been through it. I seen it. – Nas

Your look reflects what’s happening in your mind. You gotta have some swag to you. – Nas

I don’t want any title. I just say what I say, and hopefully somebody gets it, man. I’m not perfect, and I’m just here and trying to make a dollar, and being real at the same time, you know? – Nas

When you have a daughter, you want to protect her from the things that I’ve seen out there, you know, the things that’s out there that ain’t good for her. It’s a crazy world we live in. – Nas

I think if I heard someone else talking about their life, describing all the problems I’ve had, they’d look like they were through. Done. But there’s something about me – I’m smiling. Those things are really not bad enough to put me in a slump. I’m smiling with the opportunity to wake up every morning. – Nas

I want to have fun. It’s a beautiful life. You learn, you win, you lose, but you get up. – Nas

I wish the music business was a much easier thing, but you know what? Nothing easy is worth anything. So it is what it is. There comes a time when things can work out and everybody can be happy. And that’s what it’s all about in the end – everybody being happy and working it out. – Nas

The flaws, the mistakes I make – that’s the real me. – Nas

Every generation witnesses atrocities. People in power try to fulfill prophecy. – Nas

‘Life Is Good’ represents the most beautiful, dramatic and heavy moments in my life. – Nas

Hip-hop lasted and survived all these years that you have to give it credit. Even though it’s not up to people’s expectations anymore, its still here, and that’s says a lot. – Nas

I’m not talking about Russia in my music. I’ve never been to Russia. I’m not talking about Africa, Switzerland, China. I’m talking about me being American and growing up in a crazy world and helping to reflect all different sides of life. – Nas

When you’re a teenager, you want to meet a lot of girls – you want to get the most girls. You don’t know anything about respect; you don’t know anything about being faithful and loyal to your girlfriend. – Nas

Calling Michelle ‘Obama Barack’s baby mama?’ Tell me, is that acceptable? But the Obamas aren’t the only targets. Fox’s pattern of race-baiting and fear-mongering regularly focuses on black leaders, black institutions and ordinary black people. – Nas

Some people say I’m conscious, some say I’m a gangsta rapper – it’s just me doing me. I’m stomping in my own lane. I’m doing what I do. – Nas

DJs play a big responsibility of what hip-hop is doing… At the end of the day, it’s up to us to control and to own hip-hop. DJs need to challenge us rappers. They got so much power, they need to challenge us. – Nas

I’ll always love rap, no matter what’s going on. – Nas

I never stood for any president in my life, never voted, before Barack Obama. It changed my life to vote. It starts there with me. I never cared for politics before Barack Obama. I never thought it mattered to people like me. – Nas

When I say ‘hip-hop is dead,’ basically, America is dead. There is no political voice. Music is dead. – Nas

The sound of the ’90s, to me, is a combination of soul and street – it’s a feeling. – Nas

I don’t have time for the news clippings. I got my own mission. – Nas

You know, rap is sort of like a form of talking, right? So it’s like you can hear, you know, the slaves doing it. You can hear, like, you know, Africans and Jamaicans doing it just kind of as, like, a rhythmic, poetic conversation, you know, to a rhythm. – Nas

Hip-hop is really standoffish. It’s really competitive and it’s really about who’s number one all the time. Sometimes it gets out of hand. – Nas

I think the fact that I made enough noise in the world that I might be remembered is an amazing achievement. You can’t ask for more than that. – Nas

I want to sound like an instrument. I want my voice and my words to marry the beat. – Nas

I don’t get jealousy, I don’t get how people hate each other – I never did. – Nas

No matter who you are, black, white, green, there’s going to be things in your way, you know what I mean? – Nas

Man, me and Biggie were the biggest artists in New York. When he passed, I was so messed up. My attitude was messed up about him dying. There was an East-West thing back then, and I was in war mode. – Nas

There was a side of me that knew I was gonna change the game, but I didn’t know how many people would respect it. – Nas

I definitely have plans to do more collaboration albums in the future. I’m a big fan of Common. I’m a big fan of Scarface; I’m a big fan of so many people, from Jeezy to… well, there are a lot of people’s music that I respect. I don’t know who I will collaborate with, but there’s a great chance of something happening. – Nas

My earliest memories of rap music was mixed with my earliest memories of reggae music. They were big sounds around the way, heavy bass lines, strong messages, definitely. – Nas

I can’t control what people think. They know who I am. – Nas

Anybody can be a rapper, but not anybody can be a classical artist. – Nas

I love PBS! I grew up on it. If I had to say which channels were good, I’d say, you got your PBS, your History Channel, your Discovery. – Nas

We’re all Africans, everyone – black, white, yellow. – Nas

I talk about life, and I make universal music with an American style – and that’s what I do. – Nas

I think marriage is a beautiful thing. I’m still a supporter of it. – Nas

I’m just little me, an American who wants to see his country do better. – Nas

Whenever I received too much praise, it just didn’t feel right to me – ever. – Nas

Hip-hop is bigger than the South; hip-hop is bigger than New York. – Nas

Hip-hop is making a lot of noise. It should get some more spotlight. – Nas

My record company had to beg me to stop filmin’ music videos in the projects. No matter what the song was about, I had ’em out there. – Nas

I think I’ve had the longest career of strength, focus, and still being able to sell records. I think I’m that guy. I’m still blessed with the opportunity to make music and pass out a message like, ‘Life is good,’ to the world. – Nas

GaGa is one of my favourites. Her voice is incredible and she’s fearless and she’s ahead of the game. She’s ahead of the entire game, and I admire that. – Nas

Hip-hop artists, especially the older ones, are the ones who knew hip-hop was a worldwide phenomenon before the mainstream caught on, so hip-hop artists are forward thinkers. We want to stay with the new. – Nas

I’ve been called everything. Gangsta rap. I’ve been called conscious rap. You know, everything. Whoever feels like calling it whatever they want to call it, that’s on them. – Nas

Marley is someone before his time, man. He’s – he’s almost – he’s like a deity, like almost, you know what I mean? I just talk about what’s going on, but of course, you know, Bob, before rappers, was already laying that kind of thing down. – Nas

‘Stillmatic’ is the rebirth of ‘Illmatic,’ my first debut album to come out in 1994. ‘Stillmatic’ is me coming full circle in my career and with everything, and just bringing pure hip-hop back. – Nas

Anybody I’m dating, I don’t want them to talk about my music. I don’t talk about my music to them. – Nas

I had a pretty public divorce. They’re not easy – divorces – and it took me a long time to really get through. – Nas

Let’s not forget, art can sell. You ain’t gotta front all the time on your records. – Nas

I think the hip-hop purists are purists through and through. They’re here to criticize all of us. That’s just how it is. We as MC’s criticize each other. That’s the nature of hip-hop. – Nas

I like the way hip-hop is now. It’s grown up enough so that it can get involved with politics if it feels like it. – Nas

It’s never been seen that a street artist go as far as I’ve gone – keep consistent without wanting to do a bunch of ventures outside of music to keep my face out there. – Nas

N.Y. hip-hop is ok, but we gotta become brave again; we have to be brave enough and do something new – that’s what New York is about… New. – Nas

I see N.Y. hip-hop like I see N.Y. streets. N.Y. streets are grimy; it’s a grind. N.Y. rappers are hustlers – whatever sound is in, we can adapt to that; there’s nothing wrong with that. – Nas

And the stuff that I write, is even tougher than dykes – Nas

I guess entertainment means blatantly lyin’ – Nas

Hip-hop ain’t died because of the South, that’s retarded. – Nas

Dogs live longer than rappers. – Nas

I set it off with my own rhyme / cause I’m as ill as a convict who kills for phone time – Nas

People afraid of criticism but I always put myself in a sacrificial position,they been know I ain’t just rappin for fame – Nas

There was a lot of negative that was put on rappers for using the word, and I feel like we’re just misunderstood. Most of us are; some of us is just plain wack. – Nas

On the reals, all these crab nigg*z know the deal, When we start the revolution, all they’ll probably do is squeal. – Nas

In hip hop no one cares. No one stands up for it and it’s a mess. We need order so we can all follow the tradition of where we came from. We need to keep referring to the pioneers. – Nas

Big up to Flex. Stop taking so much cizock in his mizouth. – Nas

I used to carry a notebook to the studio. I don’t do that no more ’cause I don’t have the time to write anywhere but right there in the studio on the spot. So when you hear my stuff, know that I wrote it in the studio. – Nas

Used to ride with him to Brooklyn, Lewis and Halsey, co chocolate thai, vernon style and burn it down – Nas

There needs to be structures in place to do something about misrepresentation about hip hop. When awards are given out and the media talk about hip hop, they’re confused because they haven’t done their homework on it so you have a case where there’s an award for the most pop song in the world and it’s called ‘hip hop’. – Nas

Hip hop started in NY so it’s important that New Yorkers realise that to talk about NY music and its sound should not be a small-minded conversation. Music is supposed to evolve. It’s supposed to be going through changes, it’s not supposed to sound exactly the same as what it did when it started. NY hip hop has to be allowed to move on and grow and expand. – Nas

When I try to sound like the contemporary sound, it never turns out that way. That’s just me. – Nas

There’s always going to be space for battle in hip hop. For competition. It’s just an inseparable part of the game. – Nas

The Internet made the world smaller, so it’s easier for people to hear your music. You don’t necessarily need a radio record. – Nas

I rap for listeners, blunt heads, fly ladies and prisoners – Nas

You know the block was ill as a youngster Every night it was like a, cop would get killed body found in the dumpster – Nas

I had been through, of course, the divorce and I had been hit with some taxes that really showed me to be careful who’s working with you and your money, and you have to be the one that is responsible for your money – you can’t trust anyone and I did and I ran into a problem. – Nas

You don’t want to disappoint. Especially someone like me who’s been out of music for years and hasn’t had an album in like, four years. – Nas

I used to keep a dictionary and work with it and then I realized there are more words that exist in the English language than there are in this dictionary. – Nas

The big stars in rap, they were too big, so when my rap generation started, it was about bringing you inside my apartment. It wasn’t about being a rap star; it was about anything other than. – Nas

If I made an album just to sell you a story about how I’m the man, it really doesn’t show any human side to me. It’s good to talk about what’s real and what’s relevant. – Nas

I think more people want to be rappers than anything else. – Nas

I want you to know who I am: what the streets taste like, feel like, smell like. What the cops talk like, walk like, think like. What crackheads do – I wanted you to smell it, feel it. It was important to me that I told the story that way because I thought that it wouldn’t be told if I didn’t tell it. – Nas

I want to hear the artist. I want to hear them give me something that I can relate to, other than the fact that everything’s about bragging. – Nas

My first record – it was 1991. I was 16 years old. My first album came out when I was 20. So, I’ve been here that long and I still have the passion to do it. – Nas