This Day In Hip Hop and Rap History

This Day In Hip Hop and Rap History

July 6th – 50 Cent was born Curtis James Jackson III in Queens, New York on this day in 1975.

At age 21, 50 Cent was introduced to the legendary and fellow Queens native, DJ Jam-Master Jay of Run-DMC and his apprenticeship of the music industry began.

He first appeared on the 1998 Onyx single “React” from their third album “Shut “Em Down” on Def Jam Records.

Onyx were a JMJ discovery as well.

In 1999, 50 hooked up with red hot producers Trackmasters.

They produced an album for 50 entitled “Power Of The Dollar” for Columbia Records which was never released but a single was salvaged called “How To Rob”.

The hit single was featured in the Miramax Film “In Too Deep” starring Omar Epps and LL Cool J, released the same year.

In 2002, he released his first album/compilation called “Guess Who’s Back” on Full Clip Records.

“Guess Who’s Back” featured tracks 50 had recorded over the years which were produced by DJ Clark Kent, Sha Money XL, Red Spyda, Terence Dudley and others.

The newer tracks on the album were recorded in Toronto, Canada.

The album would go on to sell 400,000 copies over the next two years.

Through mutual business associates, Eminem got a copy of the album and promptly signed 50 to his record label, which was a joint venture deal with Dr. Dre’s label called Shady/Aftermath.

In 2003, 50 Cent released his classic sophomore chart-topping, multi-platinum selling album “Get Rich or Die Tryin’”.

The Grammy-nominated classic would feature 50’s new sing-song rap style fueled by catchy hooks and solid production by several producers, including Dr. Dre, Rockwilder and others.

“Get Rich Or Die Tryin’’ would contain no less than six smash hits, including “Wanksta”, “In Da Club”, “P.I.M.P.”, “21 Questions”, featuring the late Nate Dogg, “If I Can’t” and “Patiently Waiting”, featuring Eminem.

The set also featured classic albums cuts like “Many Men (Wish Death)” and “Life’s On The Line”.

The album would establish 50 Cent as a bona fide superstar in the music industry and make him a household name.

“In Da Club”, produced by Dre, with a music video which featured stars like Eminem and Xzibit, would be one of the most played songs on radio around the world ever.

Later that year, Interscope granted 50 Cent his own label, G-Unit Records, with the “G” standing for “guerilla”, and he signed his neighborhood friends Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo along with former Cash Money artist Young Buck, calling them G-Unit as well, of which he was also a member.

They released their debut album that same year called “Beg For Mercy” which also went multi-platinum and spawned the hits “Stunt 101”, “Smile”, “My Buddy”, “Poppin’ Them Thangs” and “Wanna Get To Know You”.

G-Unit would release another album in 2008 called “T-O-S (Terminate On Sight)”, which would produce more hits like “Rider Pt.2”, “Close To Me” and “I Like The Way She Do It”.

In 2005, 50 released his next solo album “The Massacre”.

The album went multi-platinum and garnered 50 yet another Grammy Award nomination.

“The Massacre” produced more hits for 50 like “Disco Inferno”, “Just A Lil Bit”, “Candy Shop”, featuring Olivia and “Outta Control”(Remix), featuring Mobb Deep.

Meanwhile 50’s G-Unit Records was building quite a roster with hit albums by The Game, solo releases by Young Buck, Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo as well as artists whose albums were eventually scrapped like Ma$e, Mobb Deep, Olivia, Lil’ Scrappy and several others.

In 2005, 50 starred in the Paramount Pictures film “Get Rich Or Die Tryin’”, which also co-starred Terrence Howard and Bill Duke.

The film was loosely based on 50’s life and was directed by Jim Sheridan.

50 Cent has released three albums since, 2007’s “Curtis”, 2009’s “Before I Self Destruct” and this year’s “Animal Ambition”.

He is reportedly expected to release a new album later this fall called “Street King Immortal”, which has been pushed back repeatedly since 2011.

50 Cent has also had quite a prolific film career as well appearing in “Righteous Kill”, “Home Of The Brave”, “Streets Of Blood”, “13” and several others.

He’s also done voice work on television animated shows like “The Simpsons”, “Vengeance”, “Robot Chicken” as well as appearing on TV’s “Entourage” as well as his own reality series on MTV called “50 Cent: The Money And The Power”.

He is also featured in three video games, “50 Cent: Bulletproof”, 50 Cent: Blood On The Sand” and “Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2”.

50 Cent has won American Music, Grammy, BET, Bet Hip-Hop, MTV, ASCAP, AVN, Billboard, MOBO, The Source, World Music and Vibe awards.

50 Cent has also authored a few books, the 2005 autobiography “From Pieces To Weight: Once Upon A Time In Southside Queens”, the 2007 novel “The Ski Mask” and 2009’s “The 50th Law”.

50 Cent has also launched his own publishing imprint called G-Unit Books.

50 Cent has been involved in several business ventures including G-Unit Clothing, SMS Audio, film production, body deodorant, condoms, vitamin drinks, dietary supplements as well as a boxing promotional company which has seen him promote fights for Floyd Mayweather Jr., Zab Judah and Cuban Olympic Gold Medalist Yuriorkis Gamboa.

As a philanthropist, 50 Cent has been involved in battling starvation and world hunger by donating proceeds from some his business ventures to various organizations who aide in this endeavor.

50 Cent is one of the most famous and recognizable artists that hip-hop culture has ever produced.