Q & A
With Death Anniversary yet to find a home on an official release, featured, solo, b-side, or otherwise, it is seemingly caught in no man's land. Leaked in the fall of 2005 and soon attached to DJ Clue's Fidel Cashflow, but nothing else since then, it will likely end up the same way as too much of Nas' best work, unreleased. According to an interview with XXL Magazine, even the leaked version isn't proper yet, as it's missing an entire intended third verse. But what we do have so far is Nas detailing a man's death ("loosen up the nine on outta his fingers"), fitting in a couple 50 Cent subliminals ("pop music nursery hooks"), and foreshadowing his then yet-to-unfold Jay-Z pact ("let's all get together or we losing the fight"). However, perhaps the most interesting narrative portion of this track comes earlier, in the as-of-now first verse. Here Nas poses a series of questions, some extreme hypotheticals. In turn, today's episode of slightly-creative-mostly-corny will attempt to satisfy the queries of our curious QB rapper.
What if I told you that AZ didn't exist?
And I put him there, played it like a ventriloquist?
Life's A Bitch featuring Jungle.
What if me and the rapper homie was really cool?
Well, Nas, you and the rapper homie are really cool now, reportedly. I even think you can stop calling him "the rapper homie." He needs a new name. "Boss" is too demeaning. "Hov" is too desperate. "Sir" is reserved for Bleek. Saying "Jay-Z" might instinctively force you to follow with "damn, you on Jaz dick." And "Sean Carter" is just too plain. Just try calling him "Jay", Jay the rapper homie.
And we used that whole thing as a media tool?
It's hardly believable, Nas, that you would have engineered the whole condom-baby seat fiasco on purpose. I didn't know a person could drive themselves to Front Street like that. But if it was all just a fabrication, then does this mean that all future Ether Day celebrations are hereby cancelled? Hip-Hop beef is people!
Would you say I was a sucker or say I was savvy
If I told you motherfuckas that me n K wasn't married?
Assuming that the "K" in question isn't Kathleen Harrison, British character actor of the 1950's, how would I respond to the suggestion that you and Kelis weren't married? Since this would mean that the awful In Public or the abomination-of-a-hook called American Way might not have ever happened, I would react happily. But nah, you and her, Mulder and Scully, musical eccentrics, go together like carpet floors and blunt residue. Plus, it was nice that you went with K and left B to the rapper homie.
What if Jungle wrote my shit, and I'm really illiterate?
Rocky starring Frank Stallone.
And the whole Nas catalogue was just an experiment?
Dr. Knockboots, it's alive!
What if I really died when Ill Will got shot?
Then "Nasty Nas records" would have been the name of a fledging label. Nas, why do you want so bad to be seen as simple-minded and dead? Ronald Reagan already has dibs on that role.
What If I did all the advertisement thrown my way?
Stop acting like you and your ventriloquist partner didn't do a Sprite advertisement back in the day. But what if you did all the other ads you mean?
PepcidAC: For that shit that makes your soul burn slow.
Valtrex: You be aight like blood money in a pimp's cum.
Check into Cash: Owe me back like forty acres to blacks.
Southwest Airlines: *Big Girl plays* . . . Wanna Get Away?
The Roman Catholic Church: Hoodrats, don't abortion your womb.
And I boned every chick that would throw me some play?
You'd probably have to load another AK, 'cause niggas be jealous, when you real, like them Brazil favelas.
Nas: Death Anniversary
BONUS: Nas & Az: Sprite Commercial