Nas is reportedly working on a fourth installment in his Grammy-winning King’s Disease series with Hit-Boy, and 50 Cent has already been tapped to appear on the project.
The cat was let out of the bag in 50’s sprawling new interview with Billboard, in which he discussed his impending musical comeback, ever-expanding multimedia empire and the 20th anniversary of his blockbuster debut album Get Rich or Die Tryin’, among other topics.
The publication noted that in addition to working on a new solo album with Eminem and Dr. Dre, the G-Unit general is set to feature on Nas’ forthcoming King’s Disease 4 LP. Further details about the project, however, remain scarce.
The Queens, New York natives have released only two songs together: “Too Hot” and “Who U Rep With,” both of which appeared on 50 Cent’s 2002 mixtape Guess Who’s Back? The pair briefly clashed in 2005 when 50 mocked Nas on “Piggy Bank” for getting a tattoo of his now-ex-wife Kelis (“Kelis said her milkshake bring all the boys to the yard/ Then Nas went and tattooed the bitch on his arm.”)
However, any lingering tension was diffused in 2014 when the pair shared the stage at Hot 97’s Summer Jam. 50 later gave Nas his flowers during an interview with Hot 97 last year, saying: “I love Nas. He’s really the one. He is the guy, the lyrical — we was figuring out how to do it.”
As for his own long-awaited new album, 50 Cent explained how his creative process has evolved since his early days working with Dr. Dre.
“I’ll go in and start to record the best music that I can come up with from everybody else. Then I’ll find some pieces, and when I accumulate stuff that I feel like is good enough, I’ll bring it to impress Dre and [his team] to get cooler stuff from [him],” he said. “At that point, they’ll go, ‘I see where you headed.’ They already know musically what I’m thinking is the right direction at that point.
“When I start projects with Dre, I would write to the first song that came on. I don’t care what it was, even if the beat wasn’t finished. I would write the record to break the ice, and we’d have something playing like [Dre] just got here even if he’s been here two or three hours and we got a record playing. He will change the drums and everything that you got there until you got something that’s a hit record.
He added: “The difference now is, with a lot of the stuff I would send, I’m looking at the angles of it happening from different perspectives instead of putting myself in the middle of actually doing something to someone. I wrote a lot of the material like that [before], but there are a million other approaches to use. So I’ll do those other things so I can still capture what goes on in the environment now. But it’s through the lens of not being in the game — it’s the perception of the game, from my perspective.”
Nas, meanwhile, released King’s Disease 3 in November 2022, which debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard 200 and has been deemed by many as the best offering in the series so far. The 17-track project saw the veteran Queensbridge MC rock the mic solo after grabbing guest features from the likes of Eminem, Lauryn Hill and Big Sean on previous installments.
Fans will get to witness Nas bring his King’s Disease trilogy to life later this month at a one-night-only concert at New York City’s Madison Square Garden on February 24.