Contact Us

Michael A. Gonzales

the fat boys big snake anniversary

Revisiting The Fat Boys’ Iconic Debut Album 30 Years Later

Whenever folks start talking about the dope talent of rap’s first “Golden Age,” The Fat Boys are often written out of the history. Granted, the trio of big Brooklyn boys, who went by the monikers Prince Markie Dee (Mark Morales), Kool Rock-Ski (Damon Wimbley) and the show-stealing Buff, a...

Read More

time is illmatic nas cover documentary
XXL: What is Illmatic's legacy?
One9: I think Illmatic's legacy will be, generations from now, people will always consider that album one of the, if not the, best hip-hop albums ever made. I think it will inspire generations. I think now you can listen to what J Cole and Kendrick Lamar say about Illmatic and how it affected them. I think it will have a long-lasting effect in the lineage of classic albums; I'll take it back to Marvin Gaye's What's Going On? to Miles Davis' Kind Of Blue to John Coltrane's A Love Supreme. It's something that spoke on many different levels and transcends space and time in many different generations.

EP: I think Illmatic is an album that gave a voice to the voiceless for a generation. It articulated the angst, the worldview, and everything that this generation was going through that a lot of people overlooked through the eyes of this young boy, Nas, who happened to be a poet. It was told through Nas' eyes, but it was about a generation of boys and men and people who were coming of age in America. And I think that's the legacy; there's compassion, there's people that are living in America that want to be heard, and there are people out there who are trying to make a way in the world, and this tells their story.

The film gives you a guide to making the album, not just musically, but also a social and political context of what was going on while he was making that album. So you'll understand why "One Love" was so important to him, because he's talking about all his friends who might not make it, but he did. There are many things we want people to take away from this film, but the one thing for sure that we want people to take away is that Illmatic was much bigger than just Nas and the great poet that he is; he was telling the story of a people, and everyone who wasn't as good at articulating that story, he did that for them. We wanted to honor the people that he's also rapping for and about on that album with this film.

Nas’ ‘Time Is Illmatic’ Documentary Is A Love Letter To The Streets Of NYC

There are times when hip-hop can make those of us who chronicle it very proud. For me, someone who has been in the game since the days of Grandmaster Flash, the most recent occasion was this past Wednesday when the annual Tribeca Film Festival unveiled the much-anticipated documentary Time Is Illmatic...

Read More


The Ten Most Important Songs Of Hip-Hop’s First Decade

On August 11, 2013, hip-hop music celebrated the 40th anniversary of the day Kool Herc dragged his turntables and records to a Bronx recreation area and spun discs in an entirely different way than most had ever heard...

Read More

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for XXL Mag quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!