Nas and Erykah Badu recently collaborated on “This Bitter Land,” a standout song from the soundtrack of the critically lauded Nas-produced film, The Land. Last night, the two showed up to deliver an electric performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
Backed by strings and nothing else, the two delivered a haunting performance of the track, which explores police brutality and the struggle of living in a land that has a history of oppressing black and brown folks. Over mournful strings, Badu channels Nina Simone with stripped down vocals before Nas spits a poignant rap about survival.
“Either you’re busy livin’ or busy dyin’, so what you gonna do?” the rapper asks. He adds, “Cops shot us up / He get a medal then retire.”
The performance is the latest in a hot run for Nas, who also showed up last weekend with Alicia Keys for a surprise performance in Times Square. Nas also is featured on a new track with Robin Thcke which dropped earlier this week, “Deep,” where he’s on point lyrically, as per usual. His new album is due out soon.
Check out Nas and Erykah Badu’s emotional performance of “Bitter Land” above.