Nas Brings Out Lauryn Hill at Hip Hop 50 Live in NYC

The Illmatic rapper also brought out Kool G Rap as a special guest while promising to bring the tribute concert back to Yankee Stadium in 2024. Other performers at Hip Hop 50 Live included members of the Wu-Tang ClanSnoop DoggLil Wayne, Ice Cube, Fat Joe, Lupe Fiasco, Eve, Lil Kim, Remy Ma and Trina.

Nas was recently honored by Billboard and inducted into the outlet’s Hip-Hop Hall of Fame with Lil Wayne at a special celebration last week. According to Nas, the moment was special as he did the most he could to stay away from award shows but found a way to finally appreciate them. 

“I didn’t get into it for awards; we got into it because we love the artform,” he said. “50 years of Hip Hop. 50 years of Hip Hop saluting some of the pioneers who inspired me…since DJ Mr. Magic started rap radio, since Marley Marl and Red Alert made us record mixtapes of our own when this shit was underground.”

He continued: “From seeing it from back then, I’m just so honored to still be alive to see it be 50 years as a fan. So I want to thank you all for getting awards at 49, not when I was 29. But I appreciate you. I ain’t gonna lie, I stayed away from award shows back then, I thought that shit was the devil … But it ain’t. You make it what it is.”