Nas is kicking off 2011 with some thicker pockets.
According to TMZ, the Queens rapper's spousal and child support payments to ex-wife Kelis have been reduced by half. The MC is required to pay the "Milkshake" songstress $20,000 in spousal support and just over $5,000 in child support every month. The MC reportedly convinced the judge that the soft economy has hurt his ability to pull in cash.
Nas was previously ordered in December 2009 to hand over $51,000 for monthly child and spousal payments — a total of over $600,000 a year. The figure was bumped up from a court-mandated amount of $40,000 per month in July 2009 after they announced their split in April of that year.
The Distant Relatives MC has had trouble paying his ex-wife in a timely fashion in the past and once faced a civil contempt charge after owing over $350,000 in back support.
In addition to having more spending money at his disposal, Nas has said he's ready to release more solo material after dedicating his time to his joint hip-hop and reggae project with Damian Marley, Distant Relatives.
"I been so caught up into me and [Damian's] thing that I started to get used to it," Esco recently told MTV News. "Like, I didn't want to do the solo thing for a while. Me and D have just been doing our thing, reaching millions of people, but it's that time."
Nas also dished that fans can expect a brand-new persona on his new material, as he plans to flex his creative skills on his forthcoming project.
"Sometimes, you can approach a record and can think, 'I got to take care of this person and I got to take care of that person,' but you really got to take care of you," he said. "I look at Michael Jackson, and before he passed away, I can only imagine the pressure he had to live up to for the next moonwalk," he continued. "And the reality is, physically, he wasn't able to live up to that. I would have loved to see him come up with the next level, without even dancing, just using his creativity. It's all about evolving and that's what I want to do: evolve."