MC Serch Remembers Illmatic’s Popularity with Bootleggers

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The 20th anniversary of Nas’ Illmatic is right around the corner and it has executive producer, MC Serch, and former Columbia Records A&R, Faith Newman, reminiscing on the bootlegging issue they had when the iconic album was first released.

“We were breaking into garages in the Bronx, because counterfeiters had 70,000 cassettes of Illmatic, with a drawing of Nas on a cross, crucified,” Serch told Revolt.

The anticipation of Nas’ debut album led to bootlegging that took over the New York area.

Newman added that they would have liked to record more songs but the bootlegging pushed them to an earlier release. “It was really so bootlegged that I think it cut into our first week of sales,” she said. – Chris M. Garner