It Was Written – Nas


From Wikipedia:

It Was Written is the second studio album by American rapper Nas, released on July 2, 1996, by Columbia Records. After the modest commercial success of his debut album Illmatic (1994), Nas pursued a more polished, mainstream sound for It Was Written. Produced largely by Trackmasters, it departed from the debut’s raw, underground aesthetic and embraced mafioso and gangsta themes. The recording also marked the first appearance of Nas’s short-lived supergroup The Firm, featuring the rappers Foxy Brown, AZ, and Cormega.

The album was a commercial success, selling 270,000 copies in its first week and debuting at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart, while receiving mostly positive reviews. It also heralded Nas’s mainstream popularity as well as that of mafioso rap, joining similarly successful albums like Raekwon’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… (1995) and Jay-Z’s Reasonable Doubt (1996). However, Nas’s more commercial sound fostered accusations of selling out within the hip hop community, and its critical standing suffered with comparisons to the acclaimed Illmatic. With at least 3 million copies sold, and certified triple platinum, It Was Written remains Nas’s best-selling album.

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Album Intro 2:28
The Message 4:10
Street Dreams 4:41
I Gave You Power 3:56
Watch Dem Niggas 4:06
Take It In Blood 4:49
The Set Up 4:26
Black Girl Lost 4:32
Suspect 4:16
Shootouts 3:46
Nas Is Coming 5:40
Affirmative Action 4:20
Live Nigga Rap 3:46
If I Ruled The World (Imagine That) 4:44