Nas and Pharoahe Monch each grew up in Queens, New York. While Nasir reps Queensbridge, Pharoahe hails from another section, South Jamaica. Both MCs made impact in 1991. The same year that Monch’s crew, Organized Konfusion, released its self-titled debut, Nas famously appeared on Main Source’s “Live At The Barbeque.” Both were in circles with Large Professor at the time, who would remix O.K. while also overseeing the production of Illmatic.
Throughout the years, these two MCs have amassed rich reputations for lyricism, storytelling, and inventive concepts. Nas was a rapper rooted in the underground who took his sound to the top of the mainstream. Some years behind him, Monch did the same with “Simon Says” and Internal Affairs (which celebrated its 20th-anniversary last month along with a debut on streaming platforms). While the Organized MC was in attendance for some of Nas’ early 1990s music videos, these men never released a track together.