The year? 1998. The song? “Banned From TV”. The verse? Jermain Baxter’s. A year after being a part of the hip-hop collective The Firm, Nature found himself pitted with more rappers (Big Pun, Cam’Ron, Styles P, and Jadakiss) on N.O.R.E.’s self titled debut album. Anchored by Swizz Beatz gorgeous horns, Nat kicked things off and made a name for himself with unapologetic lines, “Kick street tales, choking niggas like I’m Spreewell.” With a documentary in tow, Nate spoke to Rap Radar about his mean 16.
The original record was only supposed to be me and N.O.R.E. Swizz started playing a whole bunch of beats [and] he played the one that’s “Banned From T.V.” now. I fell in love with it from the first time I heard it. The original record was only supposed to be me and N.O.R.E. Next time I heard my verse, I hear all these other guys on it. I wanted to change my verse at the time ’cause I didn’t know all those guys was going to be on it. But by that time, it was already mixed so I couldn’t do nothing.
I ain’t really say, “Oh, I’m a write this for people to remember for years.” I felt the beat so strong as soon as I heard it. I always kinda wanted to be one of the first to put [topics] in a musical form and I think at the time no one was doing that. I would incorporate currents events [or] whatever.
We shot a video for it [too]. That was like the first time we had all those guys together. Everybody at the same time was like, “Yo!”, especially Pun, cause he came directly behind me. He was like, “Man, I had to play the verse over and over again!” And I felt that was a good look. Pun was one of the illest.— As Told To Brian “B.Dot” Miller
“Banned From TV”
Previously: Freeway “1-900-Hustler”