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Magic, Hip Hop Artist   Leave a comment


Awood Johnson (born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1968), better known by his stage name Magic, is a New Orleans hip hop artist, who first worked the city’s underground circuit, before signing with Master P‘s No Limit Records label thanks to the mogul’s brother, C-Murder. Magic met C-Murder at a party and impressed him with his rapping ability. Magic was intended to become part of TRU, but Master P insisted that he instead rap on the parent label with a broader fan base. The relationship came to a bitter end after most of the other original No Limit artists had already left, and Magic has since spoken out bitterly against Master P and his business practices. Magic is currently a member of Body Head Bangerz, a rap group founded by Roy Jones, Jr.

Magic proudly hails from the Ninth Ward of New Orleans and is often touted as “Mr. Ninth Ward.” He popularized the initials “CTC”, which stand for “cross-the-canal” or “Cut-Throat-City,” referring to the Industrial Canal, which runs through the 9th Ward.

On July 24, 2006, it was announced that Magic had secured a deal with TVT Records, and was too release a new album, entitled Before & After in 2007.

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Posted March 3, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop

50 Cent, Rapper   2 comments


50 Cent

Curtis James Jackson III (born July 6, 1975), better known by his stage name 50 Cent, is an American rapper, entrepreneur, investor, record producer, and actor. He rose to fame with the release of his albums Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2003) and The Massacre (2005). His album Get Rich or Die Tryin’ has been certified six times platinum by the RIAA.[1]

Born in South Jamaica, Queens, Jackson began drug dealing at the age of twelve during the 1980s crack epidemic.[2] After leaving drug dealing to pursue a rap career, he was shot at and struck by nine bullets during an incident in 2000. After releasing his album Guess Who’s Back? in 2002, Jackson was discovered by rapper Eminem and signed to Interscope Records. With the help of Eminem and Dr. Dre, who produced his first major commercial successes, Jackson became one of the world’s highest selling rappers. In 2003, he founded the record label G-Unit Records, which signed several successful rappers such as Young Buck, Lloyd Banks, and Tony Yayo.

Jackson has engaged in feuds with other rappers including Ja Rule, Nas, Fat Joe, Jadakiss, Cam’ron, Puff Daddy, Rick Ross, and former G-Unit members The Game and Young Buck. He has also pursued an acting career, appearing in the semi-autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin’ in 2005, the Iraq War film Home of the Brave in 2006, and Righteous Kill in 2008. 50 Cent was ranked as the sixth best artist of the 2000s by Billboard magazine. The magazine also ranked him as the fourth top male artist and as the third top rapper behind Eminem and Nelly.[3] Billboard magazine also ranked him as the sixth best and most successful Hot 100 Artist of the 2000s[4] and as the number one rap artist of the 2000s.[5] Billboard ranked his album Get Rich or Die Tryin’ as the twelfth best album of the 2000s[6] and his album The Massacre as the 37th best album of the 2000s.

Early life
Curtis Jackson III grew up in the South Jamaica neighborhood of Queens, in New York City. He grew up without a father and was raised by his mother, Sabrina, who gave birth to him at the age of fifteen.

Sabrina, a cocaine dealer, raised Jackson until the age of twelve, when she was killed in 1988. Twenty-seven at the time, she became unconscious after someone drugged her drink. She was then left for dead after the gas in her apartment was turned on and the windows shut closed.[9][10]

After her death, Jackson moved into his grandparents’ house with his eight aunts and uncles.[11][12][13] He recalls, “My grandmother told me, ‘Your mother’s not coming home. She’s not gonna come back to pick you up. You’re gonna stay with us now.’ That’s when I started adjusting to the streets a little bit”.[14]

Jackson began boxing around the age of eleven.

At fourteen, a neighbor opened a boxing gym for local kids.

“When I wasn’t killing time in school, I was sparring in the gym or selling crack on the strip”, he recalled.[15] In the mid 1980s, he competed in the Junior Olympics as an amateur boxer. He recounts, “I was competitive in the ring and hip-hop is competitive too… I think rappers condition themselves like boxers, so they all kind of feel like they’re the champ”.[16] At the age of twelve, Jackson began dealing narcotics when his grandparents thought he was at after-school programs.[17] He also took guns and drug money to school. In the tenth grade, he was caught by metal detectors at Andrew Jackson High School. He later stated, “I was embarrassed that I got arrested like that… After I got arrested I stopped hiding it. I was telling my grandmother [openly], ‘I sell drugs.'”[14]

Following time spent in a correctional boot camp, Jackson adopted the nickname “50 Cent” as a metaphor for “change”.[18] The name was derived from Kelvin Martin, a 1980s Brooklyn robber known as “50 Cent”. Jackson chose the name “because it says everything I want it to say. I’m the same kind of person 50 Cent was. I provide for myself by any means”.[19]

Music career1996–2000: Early careerJackson started rapping in a friend’s basement where he used turntables to record over instrumentals.[20] In 1996, a friend introduced him to Jam Master Jay of Run-DMC who was organizing his label Jam Master Jay Records.

Jay taught him how to count bars, write choruses, structure songs, and how to make a record.[21][22] Jackson’s first official appearance was on a song titled “React” with the group Onyx on their 1998 album Shut ‘Em Down. He credited Jam Master Jay as an influence who helped him improve his ability to write hooks.[16] Jay produced Jackson’s first album; however, it was never released.[9]

In 1999, after leaving Jam Master Jay, the platinum-selling producers Trackmasters took notice of Jackson and signed him to Columbia Records. They sent him to a studio in Upstate New York where he produced thirty-six songs in two weeks.[10] Eighteen were included on his unofficially released album, Power of the Dollar in 2000.[23] He also started the now-defunct Hollow Point Entertainment with former G-Unit affiliate Bang ‘Em Smurf.[24][25]

Jackson’s popularity started to increase after the successful but controversial underground single, “How to Rob”, which he wrote in half an hour while in a car on the way to a studio.[18][26] The track comically explains how he would rob famous artists. He explained the reasoning behind song’s content as, “There’s a hundred artists on that label, you gotta separate yourself from that group and make yourself relevant”.[18] Rappers Jay-Z, Kurupt, Sticky Fingaz, Big Pun, DMX, Wyclef Jean and the Wu-Tang Clan replied to the song[26] and Nas, who received the track positively, invited Jackson to travel on a promotional tour for his Nastradamus album.[13] The song was intended to be released with “Thug Love” featuring Destiny’s Child, but two days before he was scheduled to film the “Thug Love” music video, Jackson was shot and confined to a hospital due to his injuries.[27]

2000–01: ShootingOn May 24, 2000, Jackson was attacked by a gunman, alleged to be Darryl “Hommo” Baum, outside his grandmother’s former home in South Jamaica, Queens. He went into a friend’s car, but was asked to return to the house to get jewelry.

His son was in the house, while his grandmother was in the front yard.[10] Upon returning to the back seat of the car and already seated, another car pulled up nearby. An assailant then walked up to Jackson’s left side with a 9mm handgun and fired nine shots at close range. He was shot nine times: in the hand (a round hit his right thumb, to where the bullet passed through and out his little finger), arm, hip, both legs, chest, and his face (his left cheek).[9][14][28] The face wound resulted in a swollen tongue, the loss of a wisdom tooth, and a small slur in his voice.[13][14][29] His friend also sustained a gunshot wound to the hand. They were driven to the hospital where Jackson spent thirteen days.

Baum, the alleged shooter, was killed three weeks later.[30]

Baum was also Mike Tyson’s close friend and bodyguard.[31]

Jackson recalled the incident saying, “It happens so fast that you don’t even get a chance to shoot back…. I was scared the whole time…. I was looking in the rear-view mirror like, ‘Oh @#!*% , somebody shot me in the face! It burns, burns, burns.'”[14] In his autobiography, From Pieces to Weight: Once upon a Time in Southside Queens, he wrote, “After I got shot nine times at close range and didn’t die, I started to think that I must have a purpose in life… How much more damage could that shell have done? Give me an inch in this direction or that one, and I’m gone”.[11] He used a walker for the first six weeks and fully recovered after five months. When he left the hospital, he stayed in the Poconos with his then-girlfriend and son. His workout regime helped him attain his muscular physique.[9][14][32]

While in the hospital, Jackson signed a publishing deal with Columbia Records. However, he was dropped from the label and “blacklisted” in the recording industry because of his song “Ghetto Qu’ran”.

Unable to find a studio to work with in the U.S, he traveled to Canada.[33][34] Along with his business partner Sha Money XL, he recorded over thirty songs for mixtapes, with the purpose of building a reputation.

According to Shady Records A&R Marc Labelle in an interview with HitQuarters, Jackson shrewdly used the mixtape circuit to his own advantage saying, “He took all the hottest beats from every artist and flipped them with better hooks. They then got into all the markets on the mixtapes and all the mixtape DJs were messing with them.”[35] Jackson’s popularity rose and in 2002, he released material independently on the mixtape, Guess Who’s Back?. Beginning to attract interest, and now backed by G-Unit, Jackson continued to release music including 50 Cent Is the Future. The mixtape revisited material by Jay-Z and Raphael Saadiq.[23]

2002–2009: Rise to fameIn 2002, Eminem listened to a copy of Jackson’s Guess Who’s Back? CD. He received the CD through Jackson’s attorney, who was working with Eminem’s manager Paul Rosenberg.[27] Impressed with the album, Eminem invited Jackson to fly to Los Angeles, where he was introduced to Dr. Dre.[9][21][27] After signing a $1 million record deal,[21] Jackson released the mixtape, No Mercy, No Fear. It featured one new track, “Wanksta”, which was put on Eminem’s 8 Mile soundtrack.[23] He was also signed to Chris Lighty’s Violator Management and Sha Money XL’s Money Management Group.

In February 2003, Jackson released his commercial debut album, Get Rich or Die Tryin’. Allmusic described it as “probably the most hyped debut album by a rap artist in about a decade”.[36] Rolling Stone noted the album for its “dark synth grooves, buzzy keyboards and a persistently funky bounce” with Jackson complementing the production in “an unflappable, laid-back flow”.[37]

It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, selling 872,000 copies in the first four days.[38] The lead single, “In da Club”, which The Source noted for its “blaring horns, funky organs, guitar riffs and sparse hand claps”,[39] broke a Billboard record as the most listened-to song in radio history within a week.[40]

Interscope granted Jackson his own label, G-Unit Records in 2003.[41] He signed Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo, and Young Buck as the established members of G-Unit. The Game was later signed under a joint venture with Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment.

In March 2005, Jackson’s second commercial album, The Massacre, sold 1.14 million copies in the first four days-the highest in an abbreviated sales cycle[38]- and peaked at number one on the Billboard 200 for six weeks.[42]

He became the first solo artist to have three singles on the Billboard top five in the same week with “Candy Shop”, “Disco Inferno”, and “How We Do”.[43] Rolling Stone noted that “50’s secret weapon is his singing voice – the deceptively amateur-sounding tenor croon that he deploys on almost every chorus”.[44]

From left: With Olivia, Lloyd Banks, and Young Buck in Bangkok, Thailand, February 2006After The Game’s departure, Jackson signed singer Olivia and rap veterans Mobb Deep to G-Unit Records. Spider Loc, M.O.P., 40 Glocc and Young Hot Rod later joined the label.[45][46] Jackson expressed interest in working with rappers outside of G-Unit, such as Lil’ Scrappy of BME, LL Cool J from Def Jam, Mase from Bad Boy, and Freeway of Roc-A-Fella, some of whom he recorded with.[47] In September 2007, he released his third album Curtis, which was inspired by his life before Get Rich or Die Tryin’.[48] It debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, selling 691,000 units in the first week,[49] behind Kanye West’s Graduation, whom he had a sales competition with, as both albums were released on the same day.

He confirmed on TRL on September 10, 2008 that his fourth studio album, Before I Self Destruct, will be “done and released in November”.

On May 18, 2009, Jackson released a song entitled “Ok, You’re Right”. The song was produced by Dr. Dre and was included in Before I Self Destruct.

In Fall 2009, 50 Cent appeared in the new season of VH1’s Behind The Music.

On September 3, 2009 months upon the release of his “Before I Self Destruct” album 50 Cent posted a video[50] for the Soundkillers’ Phoenix[51] produced track “Flight 187” which introduced his mixtape, the 50th LAW, and was also featured as a bonus track on his iTunes release of Before I Self Destruct. The song ignited speculation that there was tension between rapper 50 Cent and Jay Z for Jackson’s comments in the song.[52]

2010 – presentIn an interview with the British entertainment website ContactMusic, 50 Cent announced that he was working on a dance album named Black Magic. 50 Cent said he was inspired by the European nightclubs. “First they played hip-hop which suddenly changed to uptempo songs, known as Eurodance”.[53] He went on The Invitation Tour in the summer of 2010, in support of Before I Self Destruct album, and the then shelved Black Magic album. He “recorded 20 songs to a whole different album concept” before he put those to the side and did something different.[54]

50 Cent revealed that he wanted his new album to have the same “aggression” as his debut record, Get Rich or Die Tryin’.[55][56]

He later tweeted that the album was “80 percent done”, and stated that fans can expect the album in the summer of 2011; however, the album has been delayed to 2012 at the earliest, due to tensions and disagreements at Interscope Records, Later 50 Cent said that he will release his album in November 2011[8] and it has also been confirmed that “Black Magic” will not be the album’s title.[8] 50 Cent has already confirmed that Eminem will appear on the album, but he also confirmed that he has been working with new producers such as Boi-1da and Alex da Kid.[57] Cardiak, who produced Lloyd Banks’ “Start It Up”, also confirmed that he had produced a song for the upcoming album.[58]

DJ Whoo Kid confirmed in an interview that 50 Cent was filming a new movie with Robert DeNiro in New Orleans.[59]

50 Cent released the first song from his fifth studio album, titled “Outlaw”, to the Internet on June 16, 2011.[60]

The single was produced by Cardiak.

It was released to iTunes on July 19, 2011,[61] although 50 Cent confirmed through his Twitter account that the song was not the album’s first single.[62]

50 Cent is set to release a book titled Playground.

Unlike his previous literary efforts — which focus on his life story and the rules of power — this time he’s aiming at a teen audience with a semi-autobiographical novel about bullying. According to a statement from the book’s publisher, the first-person novel is slated for release in January 2012 and will tell the story of a 13-year-old schoolyard bully “who finds redemption as he faces what he’s done.”[63]

50 Cent has promised to deliver his fifth studio album album over the past few years, but the LP may be delayed until 2012. In a series of tweets, 50 Cent explained that him and his label Interscope Records aren’t on the same page on how to roll out the album and that he’s delaying its release until they see eye to eye.[8]

50 Cent later suggested that his album will be releasing in November 2011, along with his headphone line SMS by 50.[8]

50 Cent spoke to MTV in relation to the possibility of leaving Interscope Records. “I don’t know,” 50 told MTV News when asked if he would ink back with Interscope once his five-album deal was fulfilled. “It will all be clear in the negotiations following me turning this actual album in. And, of course, the performance and how they actually treat the work will determine whether you still want to stay in that position or not.”[64]

On June 20, 2011, 50 Cent announced that he will release an LP titled Before I Self Destruct II. The announced sequel to his 2009 LP is suggested to be released after his fifth studio album.[65]

On June 26, 2011, 50 Cent planned to shoot a music video for the lead single from his fifth studio album titled I’m On It.[66] However, the music video never surfaced.[67]

50 Cent spoke to Shade45 in relation guest appearances for his fifth studio album. “I did four songs in Detroit with Eminem. I did two with Just Blaze, a Boi-1da joint, and I did something with Alex da Kid. We made two that are definite singles and the other two are the kinds of records that we been making, more aimed at my core audience, more aggressive, more of a different kind of energy to it.”[68]

In September 2011, 50 Cent released a song titled “Street King Energy Track #7” in attempt to promote his charitable energy drink Street King.[69]

On September 28, 2011, it was confirmed that 50 Cent is shooting a music video for his lead single from his fifth studio album titled “Girls Go Wild”, which features Jeremih.[70][71]

On October 26, 2011, 50 Cent announced that his fifth studio album will be released in December 2011.[72]

Other venturesJackson has established himself in a variety of fields. In November 2003, he signed a five-year deal with Reebok to distribute a “G-Unit Sneakers” line as part of his G-Unit Clothing Company.[73][74] He provided the voice-over as the protagonist in the video game 50 Cent: Bulletproof, which was released for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and the PlayStation Portable.

Its sequel, 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand, was released in early 2009.[75][76] He worked with Glacéau to create a vitamin water drink called Formula 50. In 2007, Coca-Cola purchased Glacéau for US$4.1 billion. Forbes estimated Jackson, who owns a stake in the company, earned $100 million from the deal after taxes.[77] He has teamed up with Right Guard to launch a body spray called Pure 50 RGX Body Spray and a condom line called Magic Stick Condoms,[78] in which he planned to donate part of the proceeds to HIV awareness.[79]

Jackson has signed a multi-year deal with Steiner Sports to sell his memorabilia.[80]

In 2005, Jackson made a cameo appearance on The Simpsons episode “Pranksta Rap”, in which he makes light of his legal troubles. The same year, he starred alongside Terrence Howard in the semi-autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin’. He starred in the 2006 film Home of the Brave, as a soldier returning home from the Iraq War, traumatized after killing an Iraqi woman.[81]

Jackson is working[when?] on a role as a fighter in an Angola State Prison in Spectacular Regret alongside Nicolas Cage, and starred opposite Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in 2008’s Righteous Kill, a movie regarding a police death.[82]

He also started the film production companies G-Unit Films in 2007 and Cheetah Vision in 2008.[83][84]

In August 2007, Jackson announced plans to launch a dietary supplement company in conjunction with his movie Spectacular Regret.[85]

50 Cent with Val Kilmer at the AMAs 2009In August 2005, shortly before appearing in Get Rich or Die Tryin’, Jackson published an autobiography entitled From Pieces to Weight: Once upon a Time in Southside Queens. In it, Jackson explores the cultural and economic forces that led him to sell cocaine and crack, details his entrepreneurship as a drug-dealer and then as a rapper, and reflects on his own ethos and on society.

On January 4, 2007, Jackson launched his G-Unit Books imprint at the Time Warner Building.[86] He also co-wrote The Ski Mask Way, a novel about a small-time drug dealer who attempts to rob his employers, which is to be turned into a film.[79] Jackson said he read Robert Greene’s The 33 Strategies of War and worked with the author on a book titled The 50th Law, an urban take on The 48 Laws of Power.[79][87] In May 2008, Jackson met billionaire Patrice Motsepe to forge a joint venture selling 50 Cent-branded platinum.[88]

In 2008, Jackson started a reality television show on MTV titled 50 Cent: The Money and the Power; the winning contestant, Ryan Mayberry, won a $100,000 investment from Jackson.[89]

On September 8, 2009, he published his book The 50th Law.[90]

In 2010, Jackson’s film company Cheetah Vision landed $200 million in funding.[91]

In July 2011, 50 Cent revealed his initiative to provide food for millions of people in Africa by 2016. 50 Cent teamed up with Pure Growth Partners to launch a charitable energy drink called Street King that will help aid in combating world hunger. For every purchase of Street King, a portion of the sales will go to providing a daily meal to an underprivileged child around the world. The partnership coincides with Fiddy’s mission statement of feeding a billion people in Africa over the next five years.

“50 Cent and I share a common vision: To address the world’s problems through smart and sustainable business models,” said Chris Clark, the founder and CEO of Pure Growth Partners. “With the rampant starvation in Africa and hunger afflicting children worldwide, we need socially responsible businesses that affect real change now more than ever.”

50 concurs, stating, “I’m inspired by Clarke’s vision and innovative approaches to tackling serious issues. It’s our mission with Street King to really change children’s lives around the world.”[92][93]

Jackson founded SMS Audio, selling headphones with the name Street by 50. He has pledged to donate a portion of the sales to charity.[94]

Personal lifeJackson has a tattoo of “Marquise” with an axe on his right biceps. “The axe is ’cause I’m a warrior. I don’t want him to be one, though,”[34] he explains. He also has “50”, “Southside”, and “Cold World” inscribed on his back because “I’m a product of that environment. It’s on my back, though, so it’s all behind me.”[34]

FamilyOn October 13, 1997, Jackson’s then-girlfriend Shaniqua Tompkins gave birth to a son, Marquise Jackson.[2][95]

The birth of his son changed Jackson’s outlook on life: “When my son came into my life, my priorities changed, because I wanted to have the relationship with him, that I didn’t have with my father.”[96] He credited his son for inspiring his career and being “motivation to go in a different direction”.[97]

PoliticsIn 2005, Jackson expressed support for President George Walker Bush after rapper Kanye West criticized him for the slow response in assisting the Hurricane Katrina victims.[98]

If his felony convictions did not prevent him from voting, he claimed he would have voted for Bush.[99]

He later stated that Bush “has less compassion than the average human. By all means, I don’t aspire to be like George Bush.”[100]

WealthIn 2007, Jackson was the second wealthiest performer in the rap industry, behind Jay-Z.[101] He resides in Farmington, Connecticut, in the former mansion of ex-boxer Mike Tyson.[102]

He put the mansion for sale at $18.5 million to move closer to his son who lives in Long Island with his ex-girlfriend.[103] On October 12, 2007, the Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut declared it “50 Cent Curtis Jackson Day”. He was honored with a key to the city and an official proclamation.[104]

One of his homes in New York purchased for 2.4 million dollars in January 2007 and at the center of a lawsuit between Jackson and ex-girlfriend Shaniqua Tompkins caught fire on May 30, 2008 while he was out of town filming for a movie in Louisiana.[105]

In December 2008 Jackson told the Canadian press that he had been affected by the recession, losing several million dollars in the stock market as an investor. He also went on to say that he had been unable to sell his Connecticut mansion and pushed Before I Self-Destruct back because of the recent economic downturn.[106]

Posted February 27, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop

D-12   Leave a comment


D-12

D12, an acronym for The Dirty Dozen, is an American hip hop group from Detroit, Michigan. D12 has had chart-topping albums in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia.[1] D12 was formed in 1996, and achieved mainstream success after Eminem rose to international fame.[2]

History
Early careerIn order to make up the dozen, it was decided the six members at the time would each create an alter-ego.[citation needed] Proof chose Dirty Harry, Bizarre became Peter S. Bizarre, Kuniva became Hannz G. (which later became Rondell Beene), Kon Artis chose Mr. Porter, Bugz became Robert Beck and Eminem created the character Slim Shady.

In 1997 they released their debut album The Underground EP recorded between 1996 and 1997. In 1997 and through 1998, its members began establishing reputations locally. Bizarre was named Inner City Entertainment’s “Flava of the Week” and went on to release an album called Attack of the Weirdos. Along with Eminem, Rah Digga and Young Zee he became an honorary member of The Outsidaz. Proof won a freestyling competition run by The Source.

D12 went through many changes during the early days even becoming temporarily inactive when, after being heard by Dr. Dre, Eminem left to pursue a solo career. Around the time of Eminem’s first record deal, Proof attempted to bring new life to D12. He managed to recruit local Detroit hip hop duo Da Brigade, which was composed of Kuniva, a local MC, and Denaun, a longtime friend of Eminem and Proof. At the time Denaun Porter was the group’s producer and later produced Eminem’s first album Infinite, but was persuaded by his partner Kuniva to join him in the group as an artist. Later the group was joined by Bugz and needing one more member, Bugz introduced his long time friend Swift, who at the time was a member of rap duo Da Rabeez.[citation needed]

Death of BugzPrior to a show in Detroit, Bugz attended a picnic at which an incident took place that led to his fatal assault. An argument with a man over a water-pistol fight escalated, the man went to his SUV to retrieve a firearm which he then fired in Bugz’s direction. He was shot four times as well as being hit by the assailant’s vehicle as he fled the scene. The incident, on May 21, 1999, was captured on video and shown later that day on local news.

Members of the group were shaken by the tragic incident, darkening the mood within the collective. One of his final acts had been to request that Swift join the group.[3] Unfortunately, a few weeks after Swift joined, Bugz was killed. Many of the remaining members started to believe the group was finished. Following the death of Bugz, Eminem volunteered as replacement in order to fulfill the group’s forthcoming obligations. This led to Eminem eventually rejoining the group.[4]

In memory of Bugz, the group recorded the track “Good Die Young” on their second album D12 World. The album also included a song titled “Bugz ’97”, which was a 1997 recording of Bugz, originally from the song “Desperados”. All five members of D12 bear a tattoo of his name somewhere on their bodies in remembrance of him. The group recorded their first LP Devil’s Night in his memory. Eminem’s third album The Marshall Mathers LP was also dedicated to Bugz.

SuccessThe group has released two albums, Devil’s Night and D12 World. Both albums debuted at number one on the Billboard music charts in the U.S. and topped the charts in many other countries. The two albums’ hit singles included “Purple Pills”, “Fight Music”, “My Band”, and “How Come”.

In August 2001, D12 and Esham were kicked off the Warped Tour after members of the group allegedly physically attacked Esham over the lyrics of his song “Chemical Imbalance,” which contained a reference to Eminem’s daughter. Eminem was not present during the tour.[5][6]

The group was often overshadowed by Eminem’s massive success, and toured without him for the second album while Eminem was busy recording Encore. Although shadowed by Eminem’s success, other members Bizarre and Proof managed to prevail with mildly successful solo careers with the releases of Hannicap Circus and Searching for Jerry Garcia in 2005. D12 (minus Eminem) appeared on Tech N9ne’s 2002 album entitled Absolute Power on the track “She-Devil”. They also decided that Eminem would not be as prominent on their upcoming third album, which remains evident even after Proof’s death. Their third album is estimated to be 70% completed without any input from Eminem. However, in June 2009, Eminem confirmed he was also working hard on the group’s 3rd studio album on an announcement made on Rap city during an interview with Eminem and Denaun Porter.[7] The group recorded a song for Eminem’s album Recovery titled “Hit me With Your Best Shot,” but it was not featured on the official album.[8]

Death of Proof
D12 performing live at the Anger Management Tour in 2005.Main article: Proof (rapper)
On April 11, 2006, Proof died from a gunshot wound at a club in Detroit, after fatally shooting Keith Bender, Jr., following an argument over a game of pool. Proof was then shot by the bouncer Mario Etheridge, Bender’s cousin. At St. John Health’s Conner Creek Campus, he was pronounced dead on arrival shortly thereafter.[9] He was buried on April 19 in The Fellowship Chapel, Detroit, to a full house of 2,660 with thousands mourning outside.[10]

Swift’s incarcerationSwift was arrested in Novi, Michigan on April 21, 2006, after failing to appear in court. It was due to his attendance as an honorary pallbearer at the funeral of group member Proof. Already on probation for a DUI offence, for which he’d served two days in October 2005, he was sentenced by District Court Judge Brian MacKenzie to 93 days in jail for violating the terms of the probation. It resulted in the stalling of recording for D12’s third album. Following his release, work commenced on the album.

Fuzz Scoota rejoins and Return of the Dozen Vol. 2On May 21, 2008, after 4 years drought and the passing of Proof, D12 released a new mixtape, Return of the Dozen Volume 1. The mixtape was designed to get D12 back on their feet, in preparation for new possible content. The mixtape lacked appearance from Proof (who had passed) and Eminem (who was working on his solo album, Relapse (although several D12 members were working on their own solo albums/mixtapes at the time)). It contains several guest features from rappers such as Royce da 5’9″ (whom they had a feud with) and King Gordy. Some tracks were solo performances from a D12 member, such “If You Want It” by Kuniva, in a similar way to how Eminem performed “Girls” from Devil’s Night.[11]

In a video posted on April 6, 2011, Bizarre announced that Fuzz Scoota, a former member from the early incarnation of D12, has rejoined the group.[12] D12 released their mixtape Return of the Dozen 2 on April 12, 2011, which included Fuzz. Eminem was only present on one track throughout the whole mixtape, though he wasn’t present at all in the previous one. Due to Eminem being on tour for his album Recovery and because of Kon Artist being his current hype man there are only four active members of D12 (Bizarre, Kuniva, Swift & Fuzz). The others, while not currently active, are still members of D12. In a video posted on YouTube by Eminem & Royce da 5’9″ on June 13, 2011, Eminem stated that he was back in the studio with D12 after not being a very active member for nearly three years. [13] D12 performed at the Kanrocksas Music Festival on August 5, 2011.[14]

The track, “Outro”, off the Return of the Dozen Vol. 2 mixtape, had a music video released on September 1, 2011, though the video did not feature either Eminem or Kon Artis. The group also stated intentions to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the release of the Devils Night album, though the celebration will be held on the actual Devil’s Night on October 30th in St. Andrew’s Hall in Detroit, Michigan, even though the album was released months earlier on June 19, 2001.[15]

FeudsNatasA rivalry with a fellow Detroit-based group known asNatas began in the late 1990s, when D12 opened for Lil’ Kim at her Detroit show. It is alleged that Natas band member Esham Smith was attacked by a group of D12 associates after he was invited onstage and subsequently out performed them. Initially, D12 member Eminem was on good terms with Natas, but the two had a falling out when he criticized Esham’s second album. In speaking with Murder Dog, Esham responded to D12 calling them “the Village People of rap,” Eminem “a super bitch,” and making reference to Eminem’s daughter, Hailie, being in a coma, on the track “Chemical Imbalance”. Both sides tried to make amends prior to joining the Warped Tour 2001. However a fight was provoked, after Esham allegedly threw items at D12’s tour bus. Smith, sustained a broken nose, bruised eardrum, a temporary loss of hearing, and multiple cuts and bruises, according his label’s spokeswoman. Natas member Mastamind sustained multiple cuts and bruises. Both bands were removed from the Warped Tour line up, and banned from ever performing at the festival again.[16].

Benzino and The SourceRapper Eminem was granted “2/5 mics” for his sophomore effort, The Marshall Mathers LP, by infamous Hip-Hop magazine The Source during early 2000. This did not go over well with Eminem, and he mocked The Source in a few songs. However, an argument did not follow until Source co-owner, Ramond ‘Benzino’ Scott, released a diss track aimed at Eminem, and granted his own rap group’s album “4/5” mics, as well as a front page cover on the magazine. Beef quickly ensued, where Eminem, along with Shady Records artists, 50 Cent, Obie Trice, and D12 ripped apart The Source’s credibility, citing that nowadays with Scott as the owner, the magazine was corrupt.[17] Competing Hip Hop magazine, XXL also became entangled with the feud, and eventually Scott retired from his position at The Source. Since then, Benzino has attempted to discredit the reputation of Eminem and other upcoming artists such as Slaughterhouse and Shady Records by leaking racist comments made by a youthful Eminem. Eminem’s last known response to Benzino was on the track, “The Sauce”[18]

Everlast and Limp BizkitEminem was notified while on the Anger Management Tour that former House of Pain member, Everlast, had mocked him on a song. Everlast claimed that while passing by Mathers in a hotel lobby, Mathers gave him a “weird look.”[19] Taking offense to this, Eminem quickly began work on a retaliatory song, “I Remember” and later teamed up with D12 to make the song, “Quitter”. It was reported that long-time friends of Eminem, group Limp Bizkit, were meant to be featured on “Quitter”, but Fred Durst canceled at the last moment.[citation needed] The record continued its release without featuring Limp Bizkit, causing the Everlast-Mathers dispute to continue. In a TRL interview, Limp Bizkit member DJ Lethal made a statement that if Mathers and Everlast were to fight in real life, Everlast would win. This angered Eminem to the point of rage, and an insulting track aimed at both Everlast and Limp Bizkit appeared on D12’s mainstream debut, Devil’s Night, as a hidden track called “Girls”. Recently, things seem to have settled, and Eminem has no longer been heard insulting Everlast or Limp Bizkit. It is currently unknown if the dispute is resolved.[20]

CanibusDuring the time Eminem and Mr. Porter started recording Recovery the rest of D12 were featured on a diss song towards Eminem with rapper Canibus, who had already had a feud with Eminem off his new record Melatonin Magik which was called “Air Strike (Pop Killer)”. Canibus name dropped Eminem’s long time deceased friend Proof, Canibus said “If Proof Was Alive He’d Be Dying Inside”. D12 member Swift responded to the record publicly, and had the following to say about DZK (another rapper featured on the track). “[He] asked us to do a track with him when he already was teamed up with Canibus without us knowing. They dissed Em, took our verses and added them to the song so they can bring traffic and make it seem like we turning on Em… as a desperate attempt to be heard after ducking and dodging Em for 7 years. It was a straight hoe move.”[21]

Chart successTheir debut album, Devil’s Night, referring to the tradition of setting unoccupied buildings on fire the night before Halloween, was released in June 2001. It debuted at number one on the U.S. and number two on the UK chart,[22] also reaching the top of the Canadian charts. Devil’s Night went on to sell four million albums worldwide and two million in the U.S. It featured the following hit singles:

“Purple Hills” (the clean version of “Purple Pills”) reached the top twenty on the Billboard 100 and number one on the rap tracks charts in 2001 as well as number two in the UK[22] and the top ten in Australia.
“Shit on You” reached the UK top ten[22] and the Canadian top five.
“Flight Music”, (the clean version of “Fight Music”), featuring Ice T, Angie Martinez and Fat Joe in its music video, reached the UK top twenty[22] and the Australian top forty.
The group’s second album was D12 World released on April 27, 2004, featuring production by Dr. Dre, Eminem, Kon Artis and Kanye West, and guest appearances by Obie Trice on the track “Loyalty”, and B-Real of Cypress Hill on the track “American Psycho II”. It debuted at the top of the U.S., UK,[22] and Australian album charts, and number two in Germany — selling over half a million records in its first week of release in the U.S. alone. “My Band”, the album’s first single, was also successful reaching number one in Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. rhythmic top forty, the top five in the UK[22] and Germany, and the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100.

Appearances in filmThe members of the group have also, on occasion, turned to acting. Eminem is the lead actor in 8 Mile and has had cameo appearances in several films and shows, while Proof also appears in 8 Mile as a freestyle rapper called “Lil’ Tic”.

The group appear in 2005’s The Longest Yard credited as “Basketball Convicts”. For the movie, the group recorded the song “My Ballz” for The Longest Yard. Although Eminem was the only D12 member not to appear in the movie, he does perform the chorus and a verse in “My Ballz”.

MembersBizarre
Kon Artis
Kuniva
Swifty McVay
Eminem
Fuzz Scoota
Former members
Proof (deceased)
Bugz (deceased)

Posted February 26, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop

50 Cent, Rapper   Leave a comment


50 Cent

Curtis James Jackson III (born July 6, 1975), better known by his stage name 50 Cent, is an American rapper, entrepreneur, investor, record producer, and actor. He rose to fame with the release of his albums Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2003) and The Massacre (2005). His album Get Rich or Die Tryin’ has been certified six times platinum by the RIAA.[1]

Born in South Jamaica, Queens, Jackson began drug dealing at the age of twelve during the 1980s crack epidemic.[2] After leaving drug dealing to pursue a rap career, he was shot at and struck by nine bullets during an incident in 2000. After releasing his album Guess Who’s Back? in 2002, Jackson was discovered by rapper Eminem and signed to Interscope Records. With the help of Eminem and Dr. Dre, who produced his first major commercial successes, Jackson became one of the world’s highest selling rappers. In 2003, he founded the record label G-Unit Records, which signed several successful rappers such as Young Buck, Lloyd Banks, and Tony Yayo.

Jackson has engaged in feuds with other rappers including Ja Rule, Nas, Fat Joe, Jadakiss, Cam’ron, Puff Daddy, Rick Ross, and former G-Unit members The Game and Young Buck. He has also pursued an acting career, appearing in the semi-autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin’ in 2005, the Iraq War film Home of the Brave in 2006, and Righteous Kill in 2008. 50 Cent was ranked as the sixth best artist of the 2000s by Billboard magazine. The magazine also ranked him as the fourth top male artist and as the third top rapper behind Eminem and Nelly.[3] Billboard magazine also ranked him as the sixth best and most successful Hot 100 Artist of the 2000s[4] and as the number one rap artist of the 2000s.[5] Billboard ranked his album Get Rich or Die Tryin’ as the twelfth best album of the 2000s[6] and his album The Massacre as the 37th best album of the 2000s.

Early life
Curtis Jackson III grew up in the South Jamaica neighborhood of Queens, in New York City. He grew up without a father and was raised by his mother, Sabrina, who gave birth to him at the age of fifteen.

Sabrina, a cocaine dealer, raised Jackson until the age of twelve, when she was killed in 1988. Twenty-seven at the time, she became unconscious after someone drugged her drink. She was then left for dead after the gas in her apartment was turned on and the windows shut closed.[9][10]

After her death, Jackson moved into his grandparents’ house with his eight aunts and uncles.[11][12][13] He recalls, “My grandmother told me, ‘Your mother’s not coming home. She’s not gonna come back to pick you up. You’re gonna stay with us now.’ That’s when I started adjusting to the streets a little bit”.[14]

Jackson began boxing around the age of eleven.

At fourteen, a neighbor opened a boxing gym for local kids.

“When I wasn’t killing time in school, I was sparring in the gym or selling crack on the strip”, he recalled.[15] In the mid 1980s, he competed in the Junior Olympics as an amateur boxer. He recounts, “I was competitive in the ring and hip-hop is competitive too… I think rappers condition themselves like boxers, so they all kind of feel like they’re the champ”.[16] At the age of twelve, Jackson began dealing narcotics when his grandparents thought he was at after-school programs.[17] He also took guns and drug money to school. In the tenth grade, he was caught by metal detectors at Andrew Jackson High School. He later stated, “I was embarrassed that I got arrested like that… After I got arrested I stopped hiding it. I was telling my grandmother [openly], ‘I sell drugs.'”[14]

Following time spent in a correctional boot camp, Jackson adopted the nickname “50 Cent” as a metaphor for “change”.[18] The name was derived from Kelvin Martin, a 1980s Brooklyn robber known as “50 Cent”. Jackson chose the name “because it says everything I want it to say. I’m the same kind of person 50 Cent was. I provide for myself by any means”.[19]

Music career1996–2000: Early careerJackson started rapping in a friend’s basement where he used turntables to record over instrumentals.[20] In 1996, a friend introduced him to Jam Master Jay of Run-DMC who was organizing his label Jam Master Jay Records.

Jay taught him how to count bars, write choruses, structure songs, and how to make a record.[21][22] Jackson’s first official appearance was on a song titled “React” with the group Onyx on their 1998 album Shut ‘Em Down. He credited Jam Master Jay as an influence who helped him improve his ability to write hooks.[16] Jay produced Jackson’s first album; however, it was never released.[9]

In 1999, after leaving Jam Master Jay, the platinum-selling producers Trackmasters took notice of Jackson and signed him to Columbia Records. They sent him to a studio in Upstate New York where he produced thirty-six songs in two weeks.[10] Eighteen were included on his unofficially released album, Power of the Dollar in 2000.[23] He also started the now-defunct Hollow Point Entertainment with former G-Unit affiliate Bang ‘Em Smurf.[24][25]

Jackson’s popularity started to increase after the successful but controversial underground single, “How to Rob”, which he wrote in half an hour while in a car on the way to a studio.[18][26] The track comically explains how he would rob famous artists. He explained the reasoning behind song’s content as, “There’s a hundred artists on that label, you gotta separate yourself from that group and make yourself relevant”.[18] Rappers Jay-Z, Kurupt, Sticky Fingaz, Big Pun, DMX, Wyclef Jean and the Wu-Tang Clan replied to the song[26] and Nas, who received the track positively, invited Jackson to travel on a promotional tour for his Nastradamus album.[13] The song was intended to be released with “Thug Love” featuring Destiny’s Child, but two days before he was scheduled to film the “Thug Love” music video, Jackson was shot and confined to a hospital due to his injuries.[27]

2000–01: ShootingOn May 24, 2000, Jackson was attacked by a gunman, alleged to be Darryl “Hommo” Baum, outside his grandmother’s former home in South Jamaica, Queens. He went into a friend’s car, but was asked to return to the house to get jewelry.

His son was in the house, while his grandmother was in the front yard.[10] Upon returning to the back seat of the car and already seated, another car pulled up nearby. An assailant then walked up to Jackson’s left side with a 9mm handgun and fired nine shots at close range. He was shot nine times: in the hand (a round hit his right thumb, to where the bullet passed through and out his little finger), arm, hip, both legs, chest, and his face (his left cheek).[9][14][28] The face wound resulted in a swollen tongue, the loss of a wisdom tooth, and a small slur in his voice.[13][14][29] His friend also sustained a gunshot wound to the hand. They were driven to the hospital where Jackson spent thirteen days.

Baum, the alleged shooter, was killed three weeks later.[30]

Baum was also Mike Tyson’s close friend and bodyguard.[31]

Jackson recalled the incident saying, “It happens so fast that you don’t even get a chance to shoot back…. I was scared the whole time…. I was looking in the rear-view mirror like, ‘Oh @#!*% , somebody shot me in the face! It burns, burns, burns.'”[14] In his autobiography, From Pieces to Weight: Once upon a Time in Southside Queens, he wrote, “After I got shot nine times at close range and didn’t die, I started to think that I must have a purpose in life… How much more damage could that shell have done? Give me an inch in this direction or that one, and I’m gone”.[11] He used a walker for the first six weeks and fully recovered after five months. When he left the hospital, he stayed in the Poconos with his then-girlfriend and son. His workout regime helped him attain his muscular physique.[9][14][32]

While in the hospital, Jackson signed a publishing deal with Columbia Records. However, he was dropped from the label and “blacklisted” in the recording industry because of his song “Ghetto Qu’ran”.

Unable to find a studio to work with in the U.S, he traveled to Canada.[33][34] Along with his business partner Sha Money XL, he recorded over thirty songs for mixtapes, with the purpose of building a reputation.

According to Shady Records A&R Marc Labelle in an interview with HitQuarters, Jackson shrewdly used the mixtape circuit to his own advantage saying, “He took all the hottest beats from every artist and flipped them with better hooks. They then got into all the markets on the mixtapes and all the mixtape DJs were messing with them.”[35] Jackson’s popularity rose and in 2002, he released material independently on the mixtape, Guess Who’s Back?. Beginning to attract interest, and now backed by G-Unit, Jackson continued to release music including 50 Cent Is the Future. The mixtape revisited material by Jay-Z and Raphael Saadiq.[23]

2002–2009: Rise to fameIn 2002, Eminem listened to a copy of Jackson’s Guess Who’s Back? CD. He received the CD through Jackson’s attorney, who was working with Eminem’s manager Paul Rosenberg.[27] Impressed with the album, Eminem invited Jackson to fly to Los Angeles, where he was introduced to Dr. Dre.[9][21][27] After signing a $1 million record deal,[21] Jackson released the mixtape, No Mercy, No Fear. It featured one new track, “Wanksta”, which was put on Eminem’s 8 Mile soundtrack.[23] He was also signed to Chris Lighty’s Violator Management and Sha Money XL’s Money Management Group.

In February 2003, Jackson released his commercial debut album, Get Rich or Die Tryin’. Allmusic described it as “probably the most hyped debut album by a rap artist in about a decade”.[36] Rolling Stone noted the album for its “dark synth grooves, buzzy keyboards and a persistently funky bounce” with Jackson complementing the production in “an unflappable, laid-back flow”.[37]

It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, selling 872,000 copies in the first four days.[38] The lead single, “In da Club”, which The Source noted for its “blaring horns, funky organs, guitar riffs and sparse hand claps”,[39] broke a Billboard record as the most listened-to song in radio history within a week.[40]

Interscope granted Jackson his own label, G-Unit Records in 2003.[41] He signed Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo, and Young Buck as the established members of G-Unit. The Game was later signed under a joint venture with Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment.

In March 2005, Jackson’s second commercial album, The Massacre, sold 1.14 million copies in the first four days-the highest in an abbreviated sales cycle[38]- and peaked at number one on the Billboard 200 for six weeks.[42]

He became the first solo artist to have three singles on the Billboard top five in the same week with “Candy Shop”, “Disco Inferno”, and “How We Do”.[43] Rolling Stone noted that “50’s secret weapon is his singing voice – the deceptively amateur-sounding tenor croon that he deploys on almost every chorus”.[44]

From left: With Olivia, Lloyd Banks, and Young Buck in Bangkok, Thailand, February 2006After The Game’s departure, Jackson signed singer Olivia and rap veterans Mobb Deep to G-Unit Records. Spider Loc, M.O.P., 40 Glocc and Young Hot Rod later joined the label.[45][46] Jackson expressed interest in working with rappers outside of G-Unit, such as Lil’ Scrappy of BME, LL Cool J from Def Jam, Mase from Bad Boy, and Freeway of Roc-A-Fella, some of whom he recorded with.[47] In September 2007, he released his third album Curtis, which was inspired by his life before Get Rich or Die Tryin’.[48] It debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, selling 691,000 units in the first week,[49] behind Kanye West’s Graduation, whom he had a sales competition with, as both albums were released on the same day.

He confirmed on TRL on September 10, 2008 that his fourth studio album, Before I Self Destruct, will be “done and released in November”.

On May 18, 2009, Jackson released a song entitled “Ok, You’re Right”. The song was produced by Dr. Dre and was included in Before I Self Destruct.

In Fall 2009, 50 Cent appeared in the new season of VH1’s Behind The Music.

On September 3, 2009 months upon the release of his “Before I Self Destruct” album 50 Cent posted a video[50] for the Soundkillers’ Phoenix[51] produced track “Flight 187” which introduced his mixtape, the 50th LAW, and was also featured as a bonus track on his iTunes release of Before I Self Destruct. The song ignited speculation that there was tension between rapper 50 Cent and Jay Z for Jackson’s comments in the song.[52]

2010 – presentIn an interview with the British entertainment website ContactMusic, 50 Cent announced that he was working on a dance album named Black Magic. 50 Cent said he was inspired by the European nightclubs. “First they played hip-hop which suddenly changed to uptempo songs, known as Eurodance”.[53] He went on The Invitation Tour in the summer of 2010, in support of Before I Self Destruct album, and the then shelved Black Magic album. He “recorded 20 songs to a whole different album concept” before he put those to the side and did something different.[54]

50 Cent revealed that he wanted his new album to have the same “aggression” as his debut record, Get Rich or Die Tryin’.[55][56]

He later tweeted that the album was “80 percent done”, and stated that fans can expect the album in the summer of 2011; however, the album has been delayed to 2012 at the earliest, due to tensions and disagreements at Interscope Records, Later 50 Cent said that he will release his album in November 2011[8] and it has also been confirmed that “Black Magic” will not be the album’s title.[8] 50 Cent has already confirmed that Eminem will appear on the album, but he also confirmed that he has been working with new producers such as Boi-1da and Alex da Kid.[57] Cardiak, who produced Lloyd Banks’ “Start It Up”, also confirmed that he had produced a song for the upcoming album.[58]

DJ Whoo Kid confirmed in an interview that 50 Cent was filming a new movie with Robert DeNiro in New Orleans.[59]

50 Cent released the first song from his fifth studio album, titled “Outlaw”, to the Internet on June 16, 2011.[60]

The single was produced by Cardiak.

It was released to iTunes on July 19, 2011,[61] although 50 Cent confirmed through his Twitter account that the song was not the album’s first single.[62]

50 Cent is set to release a book titled Playground.

Unlike his previous literary efforts — which focus on his life story and the rules of power — this time he’s aiming at a teen audience with a semi-autobiographical novel about bullying. According to a statement from the book’s publisher, the first-person novel is slated for release in January 2012 and will tell the story of a 13-year-old schoolyard bully “who finds redemption as he faces what he’s done.”[63]

50 Cent has promised to deliver his fifth studio album album over the past few years, but the LP may be delayed until 2012. In a series of tweets, 50 Cent explained that him and his label Interscope Records aren’t on the same page on how to roll out the album and that he’s delaying its release until they see eye to eye.[8]

50 Cent later suggested that his album will be releasing in November 2011, along with his headphone line SMS by 50.[8]

50 Cent spoke to MTV in relation to the possibility of leaving Interscope Records. “I don’t know,” 50 told MTV News when asked if he would ink back with Interscope once his five-album deal was fulfilled. “It will all be clear in the negotiations following me turning this actual album in. And, of course, the performance and how they actually treat the work will determine whether you still want to stay in that position or not.”[64]

On June 20, 2011, 50 Cent announced that he will release an LP titled Before I Self Destruct II. The announced sequel to his 2009 LP is suggested to be released after his fifth studio album.[65]

On June 26, 2011, 50 Cent planned to shoot a music video for the lead single from his fifth studio album titled I’m On It.[66] However, the music video never surfaced.[67]

50 Cent spoke to Shade45 in relation guest appearances for his fifth studio album. “I did four songs in Detroit with Eminem. I did two with Just Blaze, a Boi-1da joint, and I did something with Alex da Kid. We made two that are definite singles and the other two are the kinds of records that we been making, more aimed at my core audience, more aggressive, more of a different kind of energy to it.”[68]

In September 2011, 50 Cent released a song titled “Street King Energy Track #7” in attempt to promote his charitable energy drink Street King.[69]

On September 28, 2011, it was confirmed that 50 Cent is shooting a music video for his lead single from his fifth studio album titled “Girls Go Wild”, which features Jeremih.[70][71]

On October 26, 2011, 50 Cent announced that his fifth studio album will be released in December 2011.[72]

Other venturesJackson has established himself in a variety of fields. In November 2003, he signed a five-year deal with Reebok to distribute a “G-Unit Sneakers” line as part of his G-Unit Clothing Company.[73][74] He provided the voice-over as the protagonist in the video game 50 Cent: Bulletproof, which was released for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and the PlayStation Portable.

Its sequel, 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand, was released in early 2009.[75][76] He worked with Glacéau to create a vitamin water drink called Formula 50. In 2007, Coca-Cola purchased Glacéau for US$4.1 billion. Forbes estimated Jackson, who owns a stake in the company, earned $100 million from the deal after taxes.[77] He has teamed up with Right Guard to launch a body spray called Pure 50 RGX Body Spray and a condom line called Magic Stick Condoms,[78] in which he planned to donate part of the proceeds to HIV awareness.[79]

Jackson has signed a multi-year deal with Steiner Sports to sell his memorabilia.[80]

In 2005, Jackson made a cameo appearance on The Simpsons episode “Pranksta Rap”, in which he makes light of his legal troubles. The same year, he starred alongside Terrence Howard in the semi-autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin’. He starred in the 2006 film Home of the Brave, as a soldier returning home from the Iraq War, traumatized after killing an Iraqi woman.[81]

Jackson is working[when?] on a role as a fighter in an Angola State Prison in Spectacular Regret alongside Nicolas Cage, and starred opposite Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in 2008’s Righteous Kill, a movie regarding a police death.[82]

He also started the film production companies G-Unit Films in 2007 and Cheetah Vision in 2008.[83][84]

In August 2007, Jackson announced plans to launch a dietary supplement company in conjunction with his movie Spectacular Regret.[85]

50 Cent with Val Kilmer at the AMAs 2009In August 2005, shortly before appearing in Get Rich or Die Tryin’, Jackson published an autobiography entitled From Pieces to Weight: Once upon a Time in Southside Queens. In it, Jackson explores the cultural and economic forces that led him to sell cocaine and crack, details his entrepreneurship as a drug-dealer and then as a rapper, and reflects on his own ethos and on society.

On January 4, 2007, Jackson launched his G-Unit Books imprint at the Time Warner Building.[86] He also co-wrote The Ski Mask Way, a novel about a small-time drug dealer who attempts to rob his employers, which is to be turned into a film.[79] Jackson said he read Robert Greene’s The 33 Strategies of War and worked with the author on a book titled The 50th Law, an urban take on The 48 Laws of Power.[79][87] In May 2008, Jackson met billionaire Patrice Motsepe to forge a joint venture selling 50 Cent-branded platinum.[88]

In 2008, Jackson started a reality television show on MTV titled 50 Cent: The Money and the Power; the winning contestant, Ryan Mayberry, won a $100,000 investment from Jackson.[89]

On September 8, 2009, he published his book The 50th Law.[90]

In 2010, Jackson’s film company Cheetah Vision landed $200 million in funding.[91]

In July 2011, 50 Cent revealed his initiative to provide food for millions of people in Africa by 2016. 50 Cent teamed up with Pure Growth Partners to launch a charitable energy drink called Street King that will help aid in combating world hunger. For every purchase of Street King, a portion of the sales will go to providing a daily meal to an underprivileged child around the world. The partnership coincides with Fiddy’s mission statement of feeding a billion people in Africa over the next five years.

“50 Cent and I share a common vision: To address the world’s problems through smart and sustainable business models,” said Chris Clark, the founder and CEO of Pure Growth Partners. “With the rampant starvation in Africa and hunger afflicting children worldwide, we need socially responsible businesses that affect real change now more than ever.”

50 concurs, stating, “I’m inspired by Clarke’s vision and innovative approaches to tackling serious issues. It’s our mission with Street King to really change children’s lives around the world.”[92][93]

Jackson founded SMS Audio, selling headphones with the name Street by 50. He has pledged to donate a portion of the sales to charity.[94]

Personal lifeJackson has a tattoo of “Marquise” with an axe on his right biceps. “The axe is ’cause I’m a warrior. I don’t want him to be one, though,”[34] he explains. He also has “50”, “Southside”, and “Cold World” inscribed on his back because “I’m a product of that environment. It’s on my back, though, so it’s all behind me.”[34]

FamilyOn October 13, 1997, Jackson’s then-girlfriend Shaniqua Tompkins gave birth to a son, Marquise Jackson.[2][95]

The birth of his son changed Jackson’s outlook on life: “When my son came into my life, my priorities changed, because I wanted to have the relationship with him, that I didn’t have with my father.”[96] He credited his son for inspiring his career and being “motivation to go in a different direction”.[97]

PoliticsIn 2005, Jackson expressed support for President George Walker Bush after rapper Kanye West criticized him for the slow response in assisting the Hurricane Katrina victims.[98]

If his felony convictions did not prevent him from voting, he claimed he would have voted for Bush.[99]

He later stated that Bush “has less compassion than the average human. By all means, I don’t aspire to be like George Bush.”[100]

WealthIn 2007, Jackson was the second wealthiest performer in the rap industry, behind Jay-Z.[101] He resides in Farmington, Connecticut, in the former mansion of ex-boxer Mike Tyson.[102]

He put the mansion for sale at $18.5 million to move closer to his son who lives in Long Island with his ex-girlfriend.[103] On October 12, 2007, the Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut declared it “50 Cent Curtis Jackson Day”. He was honored with a key to the city and an official proclamation.[104]

One of his homes in New York purchased for 2.4 million dollars in January 2007 and at the center of a lawsuit between Jackson and ex-girlfriend Shaniqua Tompkins caught fire on May 30, 2008 while he was out of town filming for a movie in Louisiana.[105]

In December 2008 Jackson told the Canadian press that he had been affected by the recession, losing several million dollars in the stock market as an investor. He also went on to say that he had been unable to sell his Connecticut mansion and pushed Before I Self-Destruct back because of the recent economic downturn.[106]

Posted February 26, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop

Ludacris, Rapper and Actor   Leave a comment


Ludacris

Christopher Brian Bridges (born September 11, 1977),[1] better known by his stage name Ludacris, is an American rapper and actor. Along with his manager, Chaka Zulu, Ludacris is the co-founder of Disturbing tha Peace, an imprint distributed by Def Jam Recordings. Ludacris has won a Screen Actors Guild, Critic’s Choice, MTV, and several Grammy Awards during his career.

Born in Champaign, Illinois, Ludacris moved to Atlanta, Georgia at age nine, where he began rapping. After a brief stint as a disc jockey, he released his debut album Back for the First Time in 2000, which contained the singles “Southern Hospitality” and “What’s Your Fantasy”. In 2001, he released Word of Mouf, followed by Chicken-n-Beer in 2003. He took a more serious approach with his next three albums, The Red Light District (2004), Release Therapy (2006), and Theater of the Mind (2008). His latest record, Battle of the Sexes, was released in 20

Ludacris was born Christopher Brian Bridges in Champaign, Illinois, the only child of Roberta Shields and Wayne Brian Bridges.[2][3] He is of African American and Native American descent.[4][5] Bridges wrote his first rap song at age nine when moving to Atlanta, and joined an amateur rap group three years later.[6] He attended Banneker High School in Atlanta, Georgia and graduated in 1996.[1] From 1998 to 1999, he studied music management at Georgia State University.[7]

[edit] Music career[edit] Radio DJ, Timbaland collaborationBridges served as an intern and then as a disc jockey at Atlanta’s Hot 97.5 (now Hot 107.9) under the name “Chris Lova Lova”.[8]

Ludacris collaborated with Timbaland on the track “Phat Rabbit” from his album Tim’s Bio: Life from da Bassment. This song was a hit in many countries. It was later included on Ludacris’s debut LP album Back for the First Time. In Ludacris’ early music career he collaborated with Dallas Austin and Jermaine Dupri.

[edit] Incognegro (1998−1999)Main article: Incognegro
In 1998, Ludacris began to record his debut album “Incognegro”. It featured a unique style for southern rappers, with his wild rapping. Timbaland handled part of the production. Despite it’s poor sales, it was never deleted and is still sold today. Ludacris also appeared on Timbaland’s 1998 debut on “Phat Rabbit” a track that would later be used on his re-issue of “Incognegro” called “Back For The First Time”.

[edit] Back for the First Time (2000)Main article: Back for the First Time
Ludacris released his major label debut, Back for the First Time, in October 2000. This album was actually a modified re-release of the album Incognegro, made in 1999. It was produced with the help of the underground producer Sessy Melia, whom he dated for a short while. The album reached as high as #4 on the U.S. Billboard 200, and was a major success. Ludacris made his mark on the industry with singles such as “Southern Hospitality” and “What’s Your Fantasy”, along with his first ever single the “Phat Rabbit”, from two years prior. Guest appearances included 4-Ize, I-20, Shawnna, Pastor Troy, Timbaland, Trina, Foxy Brown, UGK, and others. Ludacris stated in an interview on MTV’s hip hop program Direct Effect that he came up with his stage name based on his “split personality” that he considered “ridiculous” and “ludicrous”.[9]

[edit] Word of Mouf (2001)Main article: Word of Mouf
Ludacris promptly completed his next album, Word of Mouf, and released it at the end of 2001. The video for the lead single, “Rollout (My Business)”, was nominated for a 2002, and Ludacris performed it live at the awards’ pre-show. He released singles “Saturday (Oooh Oooh)” with Sleepy Brown, “Move Bitch” with Mystikal and I-20, and “Area Codes” with Nate Dogg.

[edit] Chicken-n-Beer (2003)Main article: Chicken-n-Beer
During the spring of 2003, Ludacris returned to the music scene after a brief hiatus with a new single, “Act a Fool”, from the 2 Fast 2 Furious soundtrack. At around the same time, he released the lead single from his album Chicken-n-Beer, called “P-Poppin” (short for “Pussy Poppin'”). Neither of his new singles were as well received by either the urban or pop audiences as his previous songs had been, and both music videos received only limited airplay. Chicken-N-Beer opened strongly, but without a popular single, the album fell quickly. Guest appearances include Playaz Circle, Chingy, Snoop Dogg, 8Ball & MJG, Lil’ Flip, I-20, Lil Fate, and Shawnna.

In the fall of 2003, Ludacris rebounded with his next single, “Stand Up”, which appeared on both Chicken-n-Beer as well as the soundtrack for the teen hip hop/dance movie, You Got Served. Produced by Kanye West, “Stand Up” went on to become one of Ludacris’ biggest mainstream hits to date, hitting the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 garnering heavy airplay on mainstream pop, rhythmic, and urban radio stations, as well as on MTV, MTV2, and BET. Ludacris was sued by a New Jersey group called I.O.F. who claimed that “Stand Up” used a hook from one of their songs, but in June 2006, a jury found that the song did not violate copyrights. “I hope the plaintiffs enjoyed their 15 minutes of fame,” Ludacris said after the verdict.[10]

The album’s next single, “Splash Waterfalls”, was released in early 2004. A huge pop hit (despite its steamy video and explicit, adult-oriented lyrical content and themes), it subsequently became a success at urban radio and BET, and is the only time he has produced two consecutive top 10 singles from a solo album,[citation needed] except for Release Therapy (an unedited version of the video could only be viewed on BET’s Uncut program). It was Ludacris’ most sexual video yet, an R&B remix that featured Raphael Saadiq and sampled Tony! Toni! Tone!’s “Whatever You Want”. Ludacris received his first Grammy Award with Usher and Lil Jon for their hit single “Yeah!”. Ludacris next released “Blow It Out”, which was accompanied by a low-budget music video.

[edit] The Red Light District (2004)Main article: The Red Light District

Ludacris during a 2011 New Year’s Day concert in a Miami Beach nightclubChris Bridges took a more mature approach to his fourth album, The Red Light District. Sohail Khalid helped produce this album with various artists such as T.I., Lil Flip and Bun B. Ludacris openly boasted that he may be the only rapper able to keep the Def Jam label afloat on the opening track. Ludacris filmed and recorded the single “Get Back” in which he was featured as a muscle-bound hulk who was being annoyed by the media and warned critics to leave him alone. He first appeared on Saturday Night Live as a special guest performing with musical guest Sum 41 on a season 30 episode hosted by Paul Giamatti. He then recorded “Get Back” with Sum 41 to make a rock crossover single. The follow-up single was the Austin Powers-inspired “Number One Spot”. It was produced by New York City’s Hot 97 personality DJ Green Lantern. It used the Quincy Jones sample of “Soul Bossa Nova” and sped it up to the tempo of Ludacris’ rap flow. Featured artists on the album include Nas, DJ Quik, DMX, Trick Daddy, Sleepy Brown, and Disturbing tha Peace newcomers Bobby Valentino, Dolla Boi, and Small World. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard charts.

[edit] Release Therapy (2006)Main article: Release Therapy
In an issue of XXL, Ludacris was placed in the number nine spot for the most anticipated albums of 2006, for Release Therapy. The album Release Therapy was released on September 26, 2006. Ludacris formatted the CD to have two sides: a Release side and a Therapy side on a single CD. Guest appearances include Pharrell Williams, R. Kelly, Young Jeezy, Mary J. Blige, Field Mob, Bobby Valentino, Pimp C, C-Murder, and Beanie Sigel. The first single, “Money Maker”, which features Pharrell Williams, was released to U.S. radio outlets on July 17, 2006.[11] “Money Maker” reached number one on the BET program 106 & Park. It then went to become the rapper’s second number one single after 6 years[citation needed]. His second single, “Grew Up a Screw Up”, featuring Young Jeezy, dispels rumors that the two are or ever were in a dispute. His third single, “Runaway Love”, soon peaked at number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot Rap Tracks and won Best Collaboration in the 2007 BET Awards. His album then reached number one on the Billboard 200 album charts with sales of 309,000 in its first week. With the release of this album, Ludacris marked a change in style in his career with his musical style. The new album itself features a departure of the lighthearted mood of his previous albums, and introduces a darker side. A change of hair accompanied this as he cut off his trademark braids for a more conventional “fade” cut. To promote the album, Ludacris returned to Saturday Night Live (as both host and musical guest) on November 18, 2006.

[edit] Theater of the Mind (2008)Main article: Theater of the Mind
The Preview, a mixtape to preview the album was released on July 28, 2008. Theater of the Mind, released on November 24, 2008, and in April 2008, the single “Let’s Stay Together” appeared on xxlmag.com; supposedly from the new album (“Let’s Stay Together” was expected to but was released as a bonus track on the CD). A song with Small World called “Pinky Shinin” was expected to be on the album, but it was dropped. In an interview with Complex Magazine he stated that Chris Brown, Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, T.I., Plies, Common, T-Pain, Jay-Z, Nas and The Game will be on the album; Game is featured in a track with Willy Northpole titled “Call Up the Homies”. T.I. was on the album on a track called “Wish You Would” squashing the long feud between them. The album debuted at number five on the Billboard 200 with 213,493 sold first week. The album was released the same day as Kanye West’s 808s & Heartbreak, which took the number one spot.[12] His first single “What Them Girls Like”, featuring Chris Brown and Sean Garrett, peaked at #33 on the Billboard 100. His second single, “One More Drink”, featuring T-Pain, peaked at #24 on the Billboard 100. The third official single is “Nasty Girl”, featuring Plies. He confirmed a “sequel” titled Ludaversal[13] due to be released in 2012.[14]

[edit] Battle of the Sexes (2010)Main article: Battle of the Sexes (album)
Ludacris’ seventh studio album was released on March 9, 2010, with his first promotional single for the album being “Everybody Drunk” which features Callum Smith, originally featuring Shawnna. The first concept idea of the album was to have Ludacris and Shawnna battle it out on the album back–to–back, but this was later axed upon Shawnna’s departure from Disturbing tha Peace, ending her contract on Ludacris’ label and joining T-Pain’s Nappy Boy Entertainment label. The first official single released from Battle of the Sexes was “How Low”, which was released on December 8, 2009. The follow–up single was “My Chick Bad”, released on February 23, 2010. The third single is “Sex Room”, peaking at #69 on the Billboard 100. Ludacris’s Battle of the Sexes entered the chart at No. 1, with 137,000 sales in the first week. The album is currently certified gold.[15]

[edit] Ludaversal (2012)On August 15, 2010, Ludacris tweeted that he is currently back in the studio with The Neptunes working on his eighth studio album, Ludaversal, his “sequel” album to Theater of the Mind.[16] On July 7, 2011, according to his Facebook, he recently went to Paris, France to work on Ludaversal.[17]

Ludaversal will be released in May 2012.[18]

[edit] Personal lifeLudacris has a daughter named Karma Bridges from a previous relationship.[19]

In February 2007, Bridges lost his father to cancer. He is the co-owner of Conjure Cognac liquor and soul headphones

Posted February 25, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Hollywood, Rappers / Hip Hop

Mos Def, Hip Hop   1 comment


Mos Def

Dante Terrell Smith (born December 11, 1973) is an American actor and emcee, known by the stage names Mos Def ( /ˌmoʊsˈdɛf/) and Yasiin Bey. He started his hip hop career in a group called Urban Thermo Dynamics, after which he appeared on albums by Da Bush Babees and De La Soul. With Talib Kweli, he formed the duo Black Star, which released the album Black Star in 1998. He was a major force in late 1990s underground hip hop while with Rawkus Records. As a solo artist he has released the albums Black on Both Sides in 1999, The New Danger in 2004, True Magic in 2006, and The Ecstatic in 2009.[1]

Although he was initially recognized for his musical output, since the early 2000s, Mos Def’s screen work has established him as one of only a handful of rappers who have garnered critical approval for their acting work. Mos Def has also been active in several social and political causes.

[ Early lifeHe was born Dante Terrell Smith in Brooklyn, New York City, the son of Sheron Smith and Abdul Rahman.[2] Mos Def grew up during the golden age of hip-hop and has rapped and acted since he was six. He attended Philippa Schuyler Middle School in Bushwick, Brooklyn. He majored in Musical Theater at Talent Unlimited High School of the Performing Arts in Manhattan. He studied at New York University in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study.[citation needed]

He has two younger brothers, Abdul Rahman (a.k.a. “Gold Medal Man”), who is Mos Def’s full-time DJ, and Anwar Superstar. He also has a younger sister, Ces “Casey” Smith, and a younger half-brother, Jermone Victor Moulton, who resides in Brooklyn and shares the same mother.[citation needed]

Mos Def converted to Islam. While his father was initially a member of the Nation of Islam and later an active member in the community of Imam Warith Deen Mohammed, who merged into mainstream Islam from the Nation, Mos Def was not exposed to Islam until the age of 13. At 19, he took his shahada, the Muslim declaration of faith. He is friends with Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest.[3]

[edit] Career[edit] MusicMos Def began his music career in 1994 in the short-lived group Urban Thermo Dynamics with his younger brother D.c.Q and younger sister Ces. Despite their contract with Payday Records, the group only had two singles, and their debut album Manifest Destiny was not released until 2004, when it was distributed by Illson Media. In 1996, he emerged as a solo artist and worked with De La Soul and Da Bush Babees, before he released his own first single, “Universal Magnetic”, which was a huge underground hit.[citation needed]

Mos Def signed with Rawkus Records and formed the group Black Star with Talib Kweli. They released an album, Mos Def & Talib Kweli are Black Star, in 1998.[4] Mostly produced by Hi-Tek, the album featured the hit singles, “Respiration” and “Definition”, which would go on to be featured in VH1’s 100 Greatest Songs of Hip-Hop.[5] Mos Def released his solo debut album Black on Both Sides in 1999, also through Rawkus.[6] Around this time he also contributed to the Scritti Politti album Anomie & Bonhomie and Rawkus compilations Lyricist Lounge and Soundbombing.

Def performing at Rock the Bells (New York).After the collapse of Rawkus, he signed to Interscope/Geffen Records, which released his second solo album The New Danger in 2004.[7] The New Danger contained a mix of several musical genres, including soul, blues, and rock and roll, performed with his rock band Black Jack Johnson, which contained members of the bands Bad Brains and Living Colour. The singles included “Sex, Love & Money” and the B-side “Ghetto Rock”; the latter went on to receive several Grammy Award nominations in 2004.

Mos Def’s final solo album for Geffen Records, True Magic, was quietly released on December 29, 2006. True Magic features production from The Neptunes, Rich Harrison and Minnesota, among others.[citation needed] The album was released in a clear-case with no cover art. Neither Geffen nor Mos Def himself promoted the album at all, which is the main reason the album was received under the radar.

The song “Crime & Medicine” is essentially a cover of GZA’s 1995 single “Liquid Swords”, though it contains different verses. Also, the track “Undeniable” samples a version of the Barrett Strong/Norman Whitfield composition “Message from a Black Man”. The song “Dollar Day” uses the same beat as Juvenile’s “Nolia Clap”.[8]

MTV reported that this album isn’t a full version, but a teaser/promotional debut. A new version of the album would be released spring 2007, with updated songs and cover art. However, on October 17, 2007, Okayplayer reported, through discussions with Mos Def’s management, that these rumors were unsubstantiated. The CD was intended to be released without promotion or cover art, as per Mos Def’s request. There would be no future re-release.

On November 7, 2007, Mos Def performed live in San Francisco at a venue called The Mezzanine. This performance was recorded for an upcoming “Live in Concert” DVD. During this performance Mos Def announced that he would be releasing a new album to be called The Ecstatic. He sang a number of new tracks; in later shows, Def previewed tracks produced by Madlib and was rumored to be going to Kanye West for new material. Producer and fellow Def Poet Al Be Back stated that he would be producing as well.[9] The album was released on June 9, 2009; upon its release, only Madlib’s production had made the cut, along with tracks by Preservation, The Neptunes, Mr. Flash, Madlib’s brother Oh No, a song by J. Dilla, and Georgia Anne Muldrow.

Mos Def appears alongside Kanye West on the track “Two Words” from The College Dropout album, the track “Drunk And Hot Girls” and the bonus track “Good Night” off West’s third major album, Graduation. In 2002, he released the 12″ single Fine, which was featured in the Brown Sugar Motion Picture Soundtrack.[10]

Mos Def also appears on the debut album from fellow New Yorkers Apollo Heights on a track titled, “Concern.” In October, he signed a deal with Downtown Records and appeared on a remix to the song “D.A.N.C.E.” by Justice.[11] Mos Def appeared on Stephen Marley’s debut album Mind Control on the song “Hey Baby.” In 2009, Mos Def worked together with Somali rapper K’naan to produce the track “America” for K’naan’s album Troubadour.[12]

In April 2008 he appeared on the title track for a new album by The Roots entitled Rising Down. The new single, Life In Marvelous Times, was made officially available through iTunes on November 4, 2008, and is available for stream on the Roots’ website Okayplayer.

April 2009 saw him traveling to South Africa for the first time where he performed accompanied by The Robert Glasper Experiment at the renowned Cape Town International Jazz Festival. He enticed his bemused African following with an encore introduced by his own rendition of John Coltrane’s “Love Supreme” followed by a sneak preview of the track “M.D. (Doctor)”, much to the delight of the fans.[13]

Mos Def also designed two pairs of limited edition Converse shoes. The shoes were released to Foot Locker stores on August 1, 2009 in very limited amounts.[14]

In late 2009, Mos Def created a brand of clothing line with UNDRCRWN called the “Mos Def Cut & Sew Collection.” All clothing items will be sold in select stores located around the U.S. and almost exclusively on the UNDRCRWN website.[15] 2009 also found Mos Def among the MCs collaborating with the Black Keys on the first Blakroc album, a project headed by the Black Keys and Damon Dash. Mos Def appeared with Jim Jones and the Black Keys on the Late Show with David Letterman to perform the Blakroc track “Ain’t Nothing Like You (Hoochie Coo)”.

In March 2010, Mos Def’s song Quiet Dog Bite Hard was featured in Palm’s “Life moves fast. Don’t miss a thing.” campaign.[16]

Mos Def features on the first single, “Stylo”, from the third Gorillaz album, Plastic Beach, alongside soul legend Bobby Womack. He also appears on the track titled “Sweepstakes”.

In September 2010, after appearing on Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Friday track “Lord Lord Lord”, Mos Def confirmed his signing with GOOD Music.[17]

Mos Def has been an active contributor to the recovery of the oil spill in the Gulf, performing concerts and raising money towards the repair of the damages. In June 2010, he recorded a cover of the classic New Orleans song originally by Smokey Johnson, “It Ain’t My Fault” with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Lenny Kravitz and Trombone Shorty.

In September 2011, Mos Def announced that he planned to use the name Yasiin instead of Mos Def beginning in 2012.[18]

In January 2012, it was reported that Mos Def and Talib Kweli had begun “to resurrect” Black Star.[19]

[edit] ActingHe began his professional acting career at the age of fourteen, appearing in the TV movie God Bless the Child, starring Mare Winningham. He then played the oldest child in the short-lived family sitcom, You Take the Kids, starring Nell Carter and Roger E. Mosley. His most notable acting role before his music career was that of Bill Cosby’s sidekick on the short-lived detective show, The Cosby Mysteries. He also starred in a 1996 Visa check card commercial featuring Deion Sanders. In 1997 he had a small role alongside Michael Jackson in his short film and music video “Ghosts”.

After brief appearances in Bamboozled[20] and Monster’s Ball,[21] Mos re-invigorated his acting career with his performance as a talented rapper who is reluctant to sign to a major label in Brown Sugar.[22] He was nominated for an Image Award and a Teen Choice Award.[23]

In 2001, he took a supporting role to Beyoncé Knowles and Mehki Phifer in the MTV movie Carmen: A Hip Hopera as Lt. Miller, a crooked cop.

In 2002, he played the role of Booth in Suzan-Lori Parks’ Topdog/Underdog, a Tony-nominated and Pulitzer-winning Broadway play. He and co-star Jeffrey Wright won a Special Award from the Outer Critics Circle Award for their joint performance.[24] He also received positive notices as the quirky Left Ear in the blockbuster hit, The Italian Job in 2003.[25] He also appeared in 2003 in the music video You Don’t Know My Name of the song by Alicia Keys.

In television, Mos Def has appeared on NYPD Blue,[26] on Comedy Central’s Chappelle’s Show,[27] and has hosted the award-winning HBO spoken word show, Def Poetry since its inception.[28] The show’s sixth season aired in 2007. He also appeared on the sitcom My Wife And Kids as the disabled friend of Michael Kyle (Damon Wayans).

Mos Def won Best Actor, Independent Movie at the 2005 Black Reel Awards for his portrayal of Detective Sgt. Lucas in The Woodsman.[29] For his portrayal of Vivien Thomas in HBO’s film Something the Lord Made,[30] he was nominated for an Emmy Award[31] and a Golden Globe, and won the Image Award. He also played a bandleader in HBO’s Lackawanna Blues. He then landed the role of Ford Prefect in the 2005 movie adaptation of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.[32]

Def and Bruce Willis on the set of 16 Blocks, filmed on location in Chinatown, Manhattan on Pell Street.In 2006, Mos Def appeared in Dave Chappelle’s Block Party alongside fellow Black Star companion Talib Kweli, while also contributing to the film’s soundtrack.[33] Also, Mos Def was featured as the black banjo player in the infamous “Pixie Sketch” from Chappelle’s Show: The Lost Episodes. He was later edited out of it on the DVD. Additionally, Mos Def starred in the action film 16 Blocks alongside Bruce Willis and David Morse.[34] He has a recurring guest role on Boondocks, starring as “Gangstalicious”. He is also set to be in Toussaint, a film about Haitian revolutionary Toussaint Louverture, opposite Don Cheadle and Wesley Snipes. He made a cameo appearance — playing himself — in the movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.[35]

In 2007, Mos Def narrated the PBS-broadcast documentary Prince Among Slaves.

In 2008, Mos Def starred in the Michel Gondry movie Be Kind Rewind, playing a video rental store employee whose best friend is played by co-star Jack Black.[36] He also portrayed Chuck Berry in the film Cadillac Records,[37] for which he was nominated for a Black Reel Award and an Image Award.

In 2009, he appeared in the House episode entitled “Locked In” as a patient suffering from locked-in syndrome. His performance was well-received, with E! saying that Mos Def “delivers an Emmy-worthy performance.”[38] He was also in the 2009 film Next Day Air.

In 2010, he appeared on the children’s show Yo Gabba Gabba! as Super Mr. Superhero. He also appeared in A Free Man of Color, John Guare’s play at the Vivian Beaumont Theatre.[39]

In 2011, he began a multi-episode appearance on the Showtime television series Dexter. He played Brother Sam, an ex-con who has supposedly found religion despite finding himself in violent situations

Posted February 25, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop

Slum Village   Leave a comment


Slum Village

Slum Village was a hip hop group from Conant Gardens, Detroit, Michigan.

The group was formed by three members: rappers Baatin (deceased, 31 July 2009) and T3, plus rapper and producer J Dilla (deceased, 10 February 2006). J Dilla left in 2002 to pursue a solo career with MCA Records. Elzhi joined in his absence, after which Baatin also left due to health complications.

J Dilla eraBaatin, T3, and J Dilla grew up together in the Conant Gardens neighborhood of Detroit and attended Pershing High School. The group steadily became popular in Detroit’s underground hip hop scene. J Dilla also became a member of the production team known as The Ummah, which produced the two last A Tribe Called Quest studio albums, as well as hits for a number of R&B and hip hop musicians. Slum Village’s first album, 1996’s Fantastic, Vol. 1, was not officially released until 2005 but highly sought after in underground circles. In 1998, the group opened for another hip hop trio, the above-mentioned A Tribe Called Quest, on their farewell tour.

Originally signed to the now defunct A&M record label, the group was forced to postpone the release of their official debut album due to label politics, but in June 2000 they released Fantastic, Vol. 2 on GoodVibe Recordings. Also that year they released an album called Best Kept Secret, under the alias J-88, which featured remixes and leftover material from Fantastic, Vol. 1.

[edit] Baatin eraTitus Glover (March 8, 1974–July 31, 2009), also known as Baatin, was an American rapper who emerged from the mid-1990s underground hip hop scene in Detroit, Michigan part of the rap group Slum Village.[1]

Baatin got his start on the mic in 1986. In the early ’90s, he befriended the now deceased rapper Proof (of D12), and would accompany him to hip-hop nights at Stanley’s Café and 1515 Broadway. In 1991, Baatin’s hip-hop group, Ssenepod (dopeness spelled backward), changed its name to Slum Village, which at the time, was made up of J Dilla, Baatin and T3. It was then that Glover first christened himself Scandalous-T.

He remained as an active member of the group until the early 2000’s. In the year 2002, shortly after the release of the group’s third album, Baatin began to experience health problems, which interfered with the group’s music and touring performances. In regard to his health problems, he said:

“ The confusion started verbally. I would be angry and lash out and go crazy. I was like: Do I got demons? I couldn’t control it. It was a learning experience. They said I have depression, schizophrenia with bipolar tendencies. It was bipolar when I was responding to 12 different impulses. I didn’t hurt nobody.[2] ”

He soon went to the hospital and a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Following this, he was no longer part of the group. He stated that he was “kicked out while in hospital”, receiving a termination letter that was signed by both T3 and Elzhi, while in the hospital. He also held the group’s label responsible. In several interviews he stated:

“ When we got off the tour with Floetry and India Arie, I was dealing with a lot of mental issues… Not enough rest… Jet lag. I underwent physical ailment. I came home and said I wasn’t gonna do it no more. When I tried to seek some attention, they took it like I was leaving the group. I was in a coma for a day. When I came out my coma, all my stuff was out of my condo. I lost all my cars, lost everything. And I got a termination letter from the group. Me leaving the group was because of no support from the indie company, the same reason J Dilla left. Clearly, part of that is the label’s fault. Sometimes, electives that are put in charge over you can come up with ways to divide you. In my opinion, I was never respected. I never had a say.[3] ”

After leaving the group, he began recording as a solo artist. During this period, he went by the name “Baatin the Slumlord.”[4] In 2008, the dispute was resolved and Baatin reunited with T3 and Elzhi, and worked on the group’s sixth album Villa Manifesto.

[edit] Elzhi eraFor the 2002 release of Trinity (Past, Present and Future) on Barak/Capitol Records, T3 brought in Elzhi to join the group as J Dilla left to focus on his solo career. The album was a moderate success and contained the single “Tainted”, produced by Karriem Riggins and featuring Dwele. Also in 2002, Dirty District, a compilation of songs by Detroit rappers largely produced by T3 and “RJ” Rice, was released.

The group then became a duo consisting of T3 and Elzhi, when Baatin became sick touring in France shortly before the release of their 2004 album, Detroit Deli (A Taste of Detroit) and departed to seek treatment[citation needed]. The album included the hit single, “Selfish”, produced by Kanye West and featuring John Legend. The song samples a part of the intro to the hit song “Call Me” by Aretha Franklin. After parting ways with Capitol Records in 2005, they released Prequel to a Classic, a mixtape of mostly previously unreleased material, followed by a self-titled release in October of the same year.

Former member J Dilla died on February 10, 2006 after being diagnosed with TTP and Lupus.[5]

T3 has said in an interview that Slum Village has reunited with Baatin and has added Illa J (J Dilla’s Brother) to bring a Dilla effect. He is quoted “Slum Village is totally not that at all,” T3 adds. “I’m incorporating Baatin, and I’m putting Illa J in — not to take Dilla’s place, but just to have that essence of Dilla on this new project. I’m pulling together all the producers that we’ve used before — Black Milk, Wajeed, Karriem Riggins, Pete Rock and all the people who have been down with SV from day one.”[6]

Future projects by Slum Village include an album made with unused J Dilla beats,[7] and an album produced mostly by Black Milk.[8]

Baatin died on July 31, 2009 at the age of 35. He was found in his home on 14000 Anglin Street in northeast Detroit.[9] Medical examiners have said that there were no visible signs of trauma or foul play.[10] The cause of death currently remains unknown.[11] His death deeply affected the Detroit hip-hop scene.[11]

In July 2010, Elzhi claimed he was removed from the group, by the “poison” of Slum Village, RJ Rice.[12]

Villa Manifesto was released under Koch Records on July 27, 2010, featuring the late Baatin.

Posted February 25, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Rappers / Hip Hop, Singer