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Nas Hints at DJ Premier Collaboration Ahead of ‘Illmatic’ 30th Anniversary

Nas shifted the landscape of New York hip-hop when Illmatic hit the streets in 1994. Three decades later, Escobar is looking to party like it’s the ’90s while celebrating his iconic debut album.

With Illmatic turning 30 years old on Friday (April 19), Nas is teasing something on the horizon in honor of the seminal LP.

The Queensbridge legend hinted at an upcoming collab with DJ Premier, who produced records like “N.Y. State of Mind” among others on Illmatic in addition to sequencing the project, by posting a grainy photo of the dynamic duo together from the ’90s when they were looking to make their mark on the game and another that appears to be from much more recently.

Giddy fans proceeded to hypothesize that a project of sorts from Preemo and Nas could be in the works with the 30th anniversary of Illmatic just days away.

“Then v.s Now. What it,” Nas teased while producers Hit-Boy and The Alchemist lent their stamp of approval in the comment section.

“Will I be vindicated after all these years,” journalist Jerry Barrow wrote while seemingly alluding to the long-talked about album between the “Represent ” collaborators.

A fan voiced: “Don’t play with my emotions like this!”

The “One Love” rapper took a stroll down memory lane earlier this week when posting a series of photos from around the time Illmatic arrived and proceeded to thank those like Preemo who played a role in the acclaimed debut.

“Grainy pictures for grainy times. I had a dream I could get my favorite producers to produce on my debut album. I knew exactly what I wanted and how it should be. But I didn’t know anyone except for Paul, so I asked him would he connect me to them all. The cool soul brother that he is helped me line it up. On April 19th we smashed shit,” he reminisced.

“Even tho the album leaked months before the release date we still are apart of music history. Thank you Large Professor (Paul) and Dj Premier who drove into the projects to pick me up a time or two. Qtip , Pete Rock , and my man from The Bridge DJ LES, and my guy AZ who was just coming up himself. And thank you to everyone involved. Friday is the albums 30th. 2 The Listeners- ONE LOVE.”

DJ Premier reflected on being at all of the Illmatic sessions from start to finish. “A fun journey being at every session watching it come together and meeting all of your peeps from QB.”

Back in 2022, Nas fueled speculation the long-awaited Preemo-Escobar joint album could still be in the works. Nas touched on the mythical project on King’s Disease 3 track “30.” “Premier album still might happen,” he raps.

Premier produced three records on Illmatic (“N.Y. State of Mind,” “Memory Lane (Sittin’ in da Park)” and “Represent”). The duo went on to team up for tracks like “Nas Is Like” and “N.Y. State of Mind Pt. II” as well as 2022’s “Beat Breaks.”

Illmatic arrived on April 19, 1994, and debuted at No. 12 on the Billboard 200 with 63,000 albums sold in the first week.

Find Nas’ posts surrounding Illmatic below.

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