Nas & Damian Marley in Wellington

Reggae royalty Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley and hip-hop icon Nas hit Kiwi shores in February 2011 as part of their groundbreaking Distant Relatives tour. Supporting Nas & Damian Marley were homegrown acts Kidz In Space and 1814

Bringing together two highly influential musicians, the tour celebrated the release of their first co-created album, Distant Relatives.

Unlike all previous collaborations between Jamaican and American artists, the Distant Relatives album is neither a remix nor a featured guest spot on a single track, but a fully collaborative effort filling an entire album opening new avenues of musical expression. Exploring the deep-rooted correlation between reggae and hip-hop, the album traces both sounds back to the African Motherland in a message-driven collaboration that draws on the prowess of both musicians. Nas and Marley performed tracks together from the record live, as well as their own solo sets at the show.

It’s was a musical mission they’re were both well equipped for. As the youngest son of the legendary Bob Marley, Damian Marley is the first ever reggae artist to win a Grammy outside the Reggae category and has garnered his own critically acclaimed place in music history. Complimenting the duo is Nas, who, rising out of the Queensbridge Housing projects, has gone on to sell 20 million albums worldwide and acted as an ambassador for hip-hop culture throughout the globe.

Together they weaved a seamless and energetic show that combined Damian Marley’s Jamaican spirit with Nas’ underground grit for an infectious fusion of reggae and hip-hop.