If you consider yourself even a moderate hip-hop fan, chances are you have a copy of Illmatic. The Debut album by Nas exploded onto the scene when it was released in 1994 with just the right amount of fire and flavor to make it both dangerous and digestible.
Back in 2014 at the start of his 20th Anniversary celebration for his iconic rap album Illmatic, Nas collaborated with the National Symphony Orchestra for an unforgettable performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and Mass Appeal was there in full force to record the whole time.
Nearly 4 years has past since that eventful night and now rap fans and classical music fans alike will be able to witness the spectacle thanks to a new PBS special out Feb 2nd. The TV special will show Nas performing Illmatic in its entirety backed by the orchestra and also tracks the rappers rise to success coming from a troubled upbringing in Queens, to the master of hip-hop that he is now.
"It’s crazy, you know, I wrote this in the projects in New York City... Here we are in the capital of America, playing this album, and they feeling it," Nas says in the trailer.
PBS will air the special as part of their "Great Performances" series on Feb 2nd and then it will be available on their website the day after.