Nas in concert at MGM Grand at Foxwoods

I wish the rapper Nasir Jones had come up with a different stage name than "Nas." Every time I hear it, I mistake it for "The Nazz," which was an early and very underrated rock band headed up by Todd Rundgren.

On Friday, Todd Rundgren and the Nazz will not be performing at the MGM Grand Theater at Foxwoods - but Nas will.

Just so we're clear on that.

Hip-hop fans are more than aware that Nas is one of the biggest and most influential rappers in the world. In addition to the requisite braggadocio, Nas is a world-class DJ whose socially conscious rhymes and themes are frequently backed up by support and proactive efforts for philanthropic causes.

Along the way, Nas has been a voice of his generation, frequently admonishing the Oldsters to shut up. Now 40, he's segueing into middle age himself, but with pointed grace, as on his 2012 "Life is Good" album.

- RICK KOSTER

Nas, 9 p.m. Friday, MGM Grand Theater at Foxwoods; $48-$88; 1-800-200-2882, foxwoods.com.

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