20 music documentaries you must watch if you liked A Star is Born

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Nas: Time is Illmatic

It seems like the last few years saw a huge influx of music documentaries, but we’re definitely not complaining! In 2014, Nas was the next artist to be the center of his own film, but this was project was meant to celebrate the anniversary of is debut album Illmatic.

The film chronicled the circumstances leading up to Nas’ debut album release, and the film debuted on the album’s 20th anniversary. Illmatic had themes about gang violence, poverty, and drugs, inspired by Nas’ own experiences as a teenager growing up in New York. Bringing his own story into his music helped him find his distinct sound and style and solidified him as one of the rap greats, and that’s why Time Is Illmatic wanted to focus on that album. At the time of its release, the album’s sales weren’t that impressive, but it received rave reviews, mostly citing Nas’ lyricism.

Besides including interviews with Nas himself, the filmmakers also sat down with his father and brother, as well as well known performers like Alicia Keys, Pharrell Williams, Swizz Beats, and Q-Tip. It premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and received great reviews, some even saying it could get nominated for an Academy Award, but that never happened.