Why spit when you can whistle? Nas has chosen the scattergun approach over the force of a one-off, impact statement, early tracks from his controversially-titled album Nigger riddled with the word.
As previously reported, Nas christened the album under attack from both his label and black community groups campaigning to rid the word ‘nigger’ from hip-hop. Even 50 Cent dismissed the moniker as being used solely for “shock value”, strange given the number of times the word has passed from Curtis Jackson’s lips into a microphone.
Anyway, the record is – despite rumours suggesting Def Jam/Columbia would drop Nas if he didn’t change its title – scheduled to arrive on the 1st of July and a couple of days back ‘Be a Nigger Too’ was leaked onto the internet.
"The real niggers are back on the radio", the track begins.
“_Not mad cause Eminem said nigger, ‘cause he's my nigger, wigger, cracker friend. We all black within, we all African within._
“Some Africans don't like us, no way - a killin’ happened in Johannesburg yesterday. I'm a nigger, he's a nigger, she's a nigger. We's some niggers,” it asserts, before posing the question: “wouldn't you like to be a nigger too?_"
The track goes on to make reference to “kike niggers”, “spic niggers”, “guinea niggers” and “chink niggers”, reports CMU, before alleging "_they like to strangle niggers, blame a nigger, shoot a nigger, hang a nigger. Still, you wanna be a nigger too? True".
Nas then, not so much reclaiming a word from bigots as encasing it in platinum and tossing it to the bottom of a bottomless well.