Born into a tarnished Queens drug family during the late '70s, 50 Cent lost those dearest to him at an early age. Raised with no father, 50 Cent’s mother, whose name carried weight in the street, was found dead under unexplained conditions before 50 Cent was even a teen. 50 Cent was taken in by his grandparents, who supplied for him. But 50 Cent’s longing for things would take him to the streets. But the birth of his son put things in view for the post youngster, and 50 Cent began to chase rap sincerely. 50 Cent signed with JMJ, the label of Run DMC DJ Jam Master Jay and began learning his skill
The platinum hit makers Trackmasters took notice of 50 Cent and signed him to Columbia Records in 1999. They shipped 50 Cent to Upstate New York where they locked him up in the studio for 2 1/2 weeks. 50 Cent turned out 36 songs in this short period, which resulted in "Power Of A Dollar," an unreleased work of art that Blaze Magazine judged a classic. 50 Cent’s stick up kid anthem "How to Rob" blew through the roof and humorously painted him as a deliriously hungry up-and-comer daydreaming of robbing famous rappers. But 50 Cent and the fans were the only ones laughing. Not capable to take a joke, Jay-Z, Big Pun, Sticky Fingaz, and Ghostface Killah all replied to the song. "It wasn't personal. It was comedy based on truth, which made it so funny," says 50 Cent.
In April of 2000, 50 Cent was shot 9 times, including a .9mm bullet to the face, in front of his grandmother’s house. 50 Cent spent the next few months in recovery while Columbia Records dropped him from the label. 50 Cent didn't fold, he flew. Right into the zone. He banged out track after track, despite no income or backing, with his new business partner and friend Sha Money XL. The two recorded over 30 songs, strictly for mix-tapes, with the soul purpose of building a buzz. 50 Cent’s street value rose and by the end of the spring of '01 he'd released the new material independently on the makeshift LP, "Guess Who's Back?” Beginning to attract interest, and now backed by his crew, G-Unit, 50 Cent stayed on his grind and made more songs. But it was different this time. Rather than create new songs as they had before, 50 Cent decided to showcase his hit-making ability by retouching first-class beats which had already been used. They released the red, white and blue bootleg, "50 Cent Is the Future," revisiting material by Jay Z. and even Rapheal Saadiq.
That's when the unbelievable happened and hip-hop history was written. The energetic CD caught the ear of supa MC Eminem, and within a week Eminem was on the radio saying, '50 Cent is my favorite rapper right now.' Eminem looked to mentor Dr. Dre to confirm his belief in the young hitmaker, and the good doctor co-signed. Floored by the appreciation of the greats, 50 Cent didn't hesitate in signing with the dream team. In the wake of his acquisition, 50 Cent has become the most sought after newcomer in almost a decade. Not since the summer of '94, when radio would play absolutely anything Notorious B.I.G. related, has hip-hop seen buzz like this.
Ever the clever businessman, 50 Cent didn't let the opportunity escape him and quickly released another bootleg of borrowed beats, "No Mercy, No Fear." The CD featured only one new track, "Wanksta," which was certainly not intended for radio, but the streets couldn't wait for the official single and within weeks "Wanksta" became New York's most requested record. Thankfully, the stellar cut has found a home on the multi-platinum soundtrack to Eminem's smash movie, "8 Mile." With several huge hits already under his belt, 50 Cent is poised to be the artist to beat next year. He's coming with over ten incredible tracks stashed from last spring and newly recorded winners courtesy of Eminem, who's really cut his production teeth of late, and hip-hop's greatest, highest-selling producer Dr. Dre. "Creatively, what more could I ask for?" he asks jokingly.
"You know if me and Eminem is in the same room then it's gonna be a friendly competition, neither of us wanna let the other one down. And Dre??? C'mon." Promising an LP of the caliber of rap classics like "Illmatic," "Ready to Die," and "Reasonable Doubt," 50 Cent's debut promises to set the pace for hip-hop in coming years. The product of his unrelenting drive, talent and, frankly, his real-ness, 50 Cent’s official first album promises to do for him just what it says.