The Meaning Behind The Song: Where Are They Now? (West Coast Remix) by Nas
This remix of “Where Are They Now?” features several classic West Coast rappers who have faded from public memory, fitting with the theme of the original song. As a Music Technician, I wanted to take a closer look at the lyrics and discuss the meaning behind this powerful track.
I first heard this song on a rainy day while scrolling through my friend’s playlist. The title intrigued me, and I decided to give it a listen. From the moment the beat dropped, I was captivated by the raw energy and nostalgia that emanated from the lyrics. As a fan of old-school hip-hop, I appreciated the homage paid to the West Coast rap scene.
Exploring the Lyrics
In the opening lines, Nas poses a question: “Is Hip-Hop dead or is it still alive?” This sets the tone for the rest of the song, as Nas and his fellow West Coast artists aim to prove that the spirit of hip-hop is very much alive on the West Coast.
Throughout the song, each artist reflects on their own journey through the rap game and pays tribute to those who came before them. Breeze, from L.A. Posse, reminds us of the longevity of his career, as he continues to mentor younger artists and receive recognition for his contributions.
KAM, known for his hit song “Neighborhood Sniper,” proudly declares his presence and the impact he has made on the West Coast rap scene. His mention of Bobcat emphasizes the importance of knowing and respecting the history and pioneers of West Coast hip-hop.
King T takes us back to the late ’80s and early ’90s, showcasing his roots in the West Coast rap scene. He references iconic locations and collaborations with legendary artists like Eazy-E and Dr. Dre, painting a vivid picture of the era.
Candyman, a prominent figure in the West Coast hip-hop scene, reflects on his early days as a young player in the streets. He pays homage to influential artists like Ice-T, Toddy Tee, and MC Trouble, who have shaped the West Coast rap legacy.
Threat brings his unique style to the track, delivering funky rhymes that showcase his love and pride for California. He highlights the influence of previous generations, such as Uncle Jamm’s Army and the impact of radio station K-D-A-Y.
Ice-T, a West Coast rap icon, boasts his gangster persona and loyalty to his roots. He references the Crenshaw strip and the violent reality of the streets he grew up in, giving listeners a glimpse into his world.
Sir Mix-A-Lot, known for his hit song “Baby Got Back,” exudes confidence and success. He reflects on his achievements, from his publishing deals to his expensive cars, while still showing love and respect to the West Coast community.
The Conscious Daughters, CMG, and Threat, represent the Bay Area and female empowerment in the West Coast rap scene. They assert their presence as talented female artists who continue to make strides in a male-dominated industry.
The West Coast’s Legacy
The remix of “Where Are They Now?” serves as a testament to the vibrant West Coast rap scene and its impact on hip-hop culture. This track showcases the resilience and creativity of the artists who helped shape the genre and inspired future generations.
Through their lyrics, these artists emphasize the importance of acknowledging the past and recognizing the contributions of those who paved the way. The West Coast continues to be a hotbed for talent and innovation, with new artists carrying on the legacy of their predecessors.
“Where Are They Now? (West Coast Remix)” by Nas is a powerful homage to the West Coast rap scene. Through their lyrics, each artist shares their journey, pays tribute to influential figures of the past, and highlights the ongoing presence and influence of the West Coast in hip-hop.
This track serves as a reminder that hip-hop is far from dead and that the West Coast scene continues to flourish. It is a celebration of the rich history and enduring legacy of West Coast rap, inspiring us all to appreciate and acknowledge the contributions of these talented artists.
Album title: Where Are They Now (2007)
Written By: Candyman, The Conscious Daughters, Ice-T, Kam, King T, Sir Mix-a-Lot, Threat, MC Breeze & Nas
Samples: “Nowhere 2 Hide” by DJ Pooh (Ft. Threat) & “That’s the Way of the World” by Earth, Wind & Fire
Remix Of: “Where Are They Now” by Nas