Birthplace: Queens, New York
The son of jazz trumpeter Olu Dara, Nas first came to the attention of hip-hop fans when former 3rd Bass member MC Serch used Nas's ?Half Time? on the soundtrack of the movie Zebrahead, after which Nas was signed to a deal with Serch's production company. His first release, Illmatic (1994) has been hailed as a classic of the genre, and its follow-up, It Was Written (1996), entered the charts at number one. Nas has also acted in Belly (1998).