Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones (born September 14, 1973), who performs under the alias Nas, formerly Nasty Nas, is an American rapper, actor, and songwriter. He is also the son of jazz musician Olu Dara. Nas has released 8 consecutive platinum and multi-platinum albums since 1994, 4 of which topped the Billboard charts upon release and has sold over thirteen-million records in the United States alone. His rise to fame began in 1991 with his feautre on alternative hip hop group Main Source's debut album on the track "Live At The Barbeque". In the years that followed, Nas garnered attention from music industry A & R's and record labels with more impressive features and a solo single "Halftime". His debut album Illmatic, released in 1994 by Columbia Records, received universal acclaim from both critics and the hip hop community and would go on to be widely hailed as a musical landmark and a classic in the genre and is consistently ranked as one of the greatest LP's of all time. His follow up album It Was Written debuted at number 1 on the Billboard Charts, stayed on top for 4 consecutive weeks and went platinum twice in only 2 months propelling Nas to worldwide noteriety. Nas was also part of the hip-hop supergroup The Firm, which released one album under Dr. Dre's record label Aftermath.