Nas: "When you think you have nothing, the smallest thing can give you some purpose."
Nas recently addressed Chief Keef during an interview with REVOLT.
"What people gotta understand is in the street you don’t exist until you do something to put your name in some form in one of the history book pages,” Nas says in REVOLT's "Nas Defends Chief Keef, Explains The Influence Of Street Life." “People say, 'Why would you go this way? Why would the guys do it?' I say it, too. You saw how the movie Scarface end or you saw how Paid In Full end or you saw how that street story from your man, you saw how he ended up. So why go the same route? It's because people need to find themselves. When you out there, when you think you have nothing, the smallest thing can give you some purpose.
"People don't care about consequences because they feel like they're starting from nothing anyway," Nas adds. "If you feel like you’re a zero, if you’re nothing, then you’ll do anything because you don't want to be nothing. You don't want to have nothing. You want to do anything to feel alive and that anything could be the penitentiary chances you taking, but whatever it is you gonna do it."
Keef has had legal troubles throughout his career, as well as a drug habit that has affected his profession. In February 2014, the rapper spoke about how an addiction to lean impaired his ability to make quality music. "My last two mixtapes were mistakes," Keef said at the time, referring to Bang Part Two mixtape, which was released in August and the Almighty So mixtape, which was released in October. "I was on promethazine, all drugged out," Keef added. "I was tweaking. I don't sip the lean no more though.”
Nas is celebrating 20 years since the release of Illmatic, the rapper's debut album, by releasing Illmatic XX today (April 15).
For more from Nas' REVOLT interview about Chief Keef, view the clip below.