The Murder Inc. founder shared the anecdote during his latest appearance on Drink Champs, where he claimed his ostentatious, ecstasy-fueled idea left Nas — who Gotti briefly signed in the early ’00s — fearing for his life.
“When Nas was in the Crack House [the studio] — and this was when I’m high as fuck [on ecstasy], grinding my teeth — I’m telling Nas, ‘We gon’ get three tour buses. We gon’ grab you, Ja, Ashanti. We gon’ hitch a Rolls-Royce, a Ferrari, a Bentley to the back of the tour bus,’” Gotti remembered. “This is when he was like, ‘Okay, I’m not fucking with these n-ggas.’”
He continued: “We had a show in Baltimore that night. I said, ‘Before we go to the show, we gon’ hit the hood and we gon’ ride through.’ I was like, ‘Yo, hood n-ggas is gonna go crazy!’ Imagine me, Nas, Ja, Ashanti and we pulling up in Rolls-Royces and eating fried chicken in the hood. That’s a moment. Anyone who gets a glimpse of that is never forgetting that.
“So Nas was like, ‘Yo, I hear you but what if we get killed? Being in the hood like that.’ This is when I lost him. I said, ‘If we get killed, then we martyrs, n-gga.’”
“Yeah, you would’ve lost me too,” co-host N.O.R.E. jokingly interjected.
Despite Nas’ apprehension, Irv Gotti claimed that Ja Rule was down to ride, even if it meant potentially running into trouble.
“The n-gga Rule was backing me up,” he said. “Rule was smoking a blunt and he said, ‘Hell yeah, fuck that.’ Rule was with me a thousand percent. He was like, ‘Fuck death.’”
Elaborating on his Baltimore plan, the record executive added: “What I was talking about would’ve been some once-in-a-lifetime legendary shit … I was just trying to do something that’s never been done before. And I said, ‘Yo, we gon’ have security, it’s gon’ be 50 n-ggas. N-ggas wanna get nasty, we get nasty!’”
After the clip circulated on social media, Irv Gotti came under fire for struggling to comprehend Nas’ concerns and portraying the rapper as timid and afraid.
“@Nas was smart. You don’t pull up to NO hood especially Baltimore.. with Rolls Royces & Chicken with MURDER as any theme,” Chuck D wrote on Twitter. “It can totally be misconstrued as disingenuous. Every hood also has a intelligent street scholarship that smells it coming FAKE. Selling to it is Robbing it.”
“Nas ‘What if we get killed?’ Irv Gotti ‘Then we martyrs’ Over fried chicken in the hood???” DJ Semtex added in disbelief. “I don’t know what’s worse. The suggestion, or admitting you made the suggestion and ‘lost him.’”
“Nas mentality was ahead of its time, fuck irv gotti for even having a wack ass idea like that, stay humble mf dont flex on people who have less than you,” another person wrote while sharing lyrics from Nas’ “Every Ghetto” where he rapped: “Watchin’ kids freeze in winters, they still poor/ How could I tease them with Benzes and feel no remorse?”
“Nas from Queens the real queens. He grew up when real drug king pins was moving to DMV area and beefing with locals,” someone else wrote in defense of the Illmatic MC. “Why would he as a rich rapper go stunt on poor people? Irv gotti is a loser.”
Irv Gotti previously reflected on Nas’ short-lived stint on Murder Inc. in an interview with HipHopDX last year, calling it one of the biggest regrets of his career.
“I got love for Nas, but I should’ve never fucked with him because me and JAY-Z was brothers,” he said.
Gotti, who had worked closely with Hov since the onset of his career and was even involved in the making of Jay’s “Ether” response “Supa Ugly,” stunned the rap world in August 2002 when he recruited Nas to Murder Inc.
However, when Nas’ God’s Son album arrived in December of that year, there was no Murder Inc. logo on the CD nor no mention of the label in his music.
In an interview with XXL a few months later, Irv Gotti cleared up the mystery and claimed Nas “just disappeared.”
“I don’t want this to come across like any Nas hate. That’s my brother, I got love for him. But I’ma say this: He cried out when he did that thing with Hot 97,” he said, referencing the rapper’s legendary June 2002 radio rant after he was dropped from Hot 97’s Summer Jam over plans to stage a mock lynching of JAY-Z during his set.
“He cried out for help and for people to support him. He cried out for being a part of a family. He cried out for it openly, like, ‘Yeah, yo, Murder Inc. This is as big as ‘Pac joining Tha Row!’ All the conversations we had.
“And then he just… I don’t know. I don’t know what happened. I don’t know. He just disappeared. We did ‘The Pledge’ joint, and that was it. He just disappeared. It was almost like he got what he got from it, and then just disappeared. He’s a strange guy, but I guess he’s happy with who he is.”