US rapper, Nas who has visited Africa three times already – once for his birthday and twice for corporate performances – has said that the reason why most of his colleagues never go to Africa is because they are afraid of the ‘dark continent’.
Answering questions at a recent press conference back home in the States, Nas said: “let’s go straight to it, people are scared. There‘s horror stories about Africa that’s out of this world…when I finally got there, I never knew what to expect, I didn’t send much, just brought a few of my jewelry… but I went there and I figured out that there’s been a lot of lies told to American people about what’s going on there…One thing about us African-Americans and Africans is that we don’t communicate, we don’t talk, we don’t see a reason to talk, we don’t get along.”
According to Nas, he grew up at a time when Bob Marley was talking about Africa Unity and so he got interested in reading more about Africa and to find out about his roots. He said a lot had to be done to change the image of Africa and hiphop artist, who are largely African-Americans have a role to play in changing the status quo.
He mentioned Nigeria as one of the places he visited in Africa and said it almost made him cry, seeing the living conditions of majority of the people there. He said hip-hop should find a way to communicate with Africa. He also raised questions about why rock stars like Bono seem to do so much in Africa and hiphop artists aren’t. “Hip-hop artists need to start by raising some voices”.