Despite his announcement at a concert that his next album would be named “N*gga,” Nas’ label, Def Jam, insists that is not the tile of his upcoming set. The label also denied that the rapper album would be due out in December, even though he also announced that the album would be in stores sometime that month.
“There is no album release by Nas on the release schedule at this point. And they would be unlikely to release an albumn with that title,” a source close to Island Def Jam told FOXNews.com. “How would that look at Wal-Mart?”
The controversy began during Nas’ performance at Manhattan’s Highline Ballroom on Oct. 12. He told the crowd that he wanted the N-word to be the title of his 2005 album, but Def Jam wasn’t having it. Instead, he titled the album Hip Hop is Dead.
But there’s no doubt that Nas made the claim — which set the hip-hop community abuzz this week — during a Friday night performance at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City. The rapper’s Greatest Hits album is set to hit music store shelves in early November.
Nas’ initial claim drew criticism from the NAACP and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
“The title using the ‘N’ word is morally offensive and socially distasteful. Nas has the right to degrade and denigrate in the name of free speech, but there is no honor in it,” Jackson said in a statement. “Radio and television stations have no obligation to play it and self-respecting people have no obligation to buy it. I wish he would use his talents to lift up and inspire, not degrade, making mockery of racism.”
Even shock jock Don Imus’ camp weighed in on the matter, showing their support for Nas’ proposed title. “It’s a good thing,” an Imus insider told FOXNews.com. “Words like that should be deprived of their meanings, and then they can’t hurt.”