Gary Susman
December 05, 2002 AT 05:00 AM EST

Taking a page from Eminem, Nas hopes to take the wind out of the sails of Internet pirates by moving forward the release date of ”God’s Son” at the 11th hour. MTV News reports that the album, scheduled for a traditional Tuesday release on Dec. 17, will now hit stores four days earlier, on Friday the 13th.

Nas hopes that will be his lucky day, just as Eminem did earlier this year when he twice moved up the release date of ”The Eminem Show,” with last-minute rescheduling of the date from June 4 to May 28 to May 24, a Sunday. (In fact, in many stores, the album was available on Friday, May 22.) That cut short the window for bootleggers who had already made ”Eminem Show” available online, and the album became one of this year’s top sellers.

Nas’ ”God’s Son,” which includes a track produced by Eminem, is also already online in MP3 form and in street bootlegs, and the rapper tells fans that both are poor ways to obtain his music. ”’God’s Son’ is my most personal album and I poured my heart and spirit into it,”’ he said in a statement released Wednesday. ”It’s important to me that the fans hear my album the way I intended. When you buy a bootleg or pirate a download off the Net, you don’t get the real thing. The sound sucks, the sequencing is wrong, you’re probably missing some tracks, and you don’t even get the artwork and CD bonuses.” Plus, you’re not putting dollars in Nas’ pocket.

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