On this day in Hip Hop history, Nas released his third studio album, 'I Am...', in 1999.
Released by Columbia Records, the album debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart. The album sold 470,000 copies in its first week and went on to be certified double platinum in the United States. The album was nominated in 2000 for Best Rap album at the 43rd Grammy Awards.
This album was popular all around the World. 'I Am...' made appearances on music charts in Australia, Canada, Norway, France, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. The two official singles from this project claimed spots on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. 'Nas Is Like...' peaked at #86 and 'Hate Me Now' ft. Puff Daddy climbed a little higher to take the #62 spot.
Hate Me Now
Hate Me Now' produced by the Trackmasters is an amazing song, which is cinematic and has a string part that sounds like it's being played by a string quartet in the middle of a thunderstorm with lightning striking the dirt on the ground leaving the earth scorched. Diddy's vocals are both chilled and just stating a matter of fact that 'You can hate me now, but I won't stop now, 'cause I can't stop now, you can hate now', while the underlying rage comes out when he screams with a distortion effect on his voice.
Everything about 'Hate Me Now' is sublime from the dirty bassline to the stabbing strings, to the vocal delivery and subject matter, and one of the best choruses ever in hip-hop. After that stunning track, Nas does some excellent storytelling on 'Small World' which is similar to some of Biggie's work on Life After Death. The production is good and features a good amount of melody.