2000-2003 introduced the question of what Hip-Hop had to offer in the new millennium. Hip-Hop already had a stronghold over music charts but there was still unfinished business. New artists were striving to claim their spot in rap history while veteran rappers were steadily revamping their sound and showboating their newfound lyrical growth. Who could ask for more?Hip-Hops most successful artists were beginning to capitalize off the rap group phenom like it was going out of style; D12, St. Lunatics, Disturbing the Peace and The Diplomats all thrived throughout the 00s after being spotlighted by breakout artists, Nelly, Ludacris, Eminem and Camron.In the early 00s (and even now somewhat) it almost seemed like a prerequisite to have a at least one track from Timbaland, Missy, Jermaine Dupri, Just Blaze, The Neptunes, or Kanye West on your album to even dream of becoming platinum. We also recognized the increase of rap artists receiving more love from Hollywood in film roles, some of which were even Hollywood box office hits. You had your raw talent, your club party hits, but some were already jonesing for the days of the 90s.That fine line between Hip-Hop and pop hits was wearing thin in some circumstances, as was the line between healthy competition and full blown rivalry as it took a lot of stamina to keep up with the latest dis track and which rappers were engaged in a lyrical combat. The atmosphere reeked of fierce competition with Hip-Hop beefs spreading like wildfire and igniting that age old question of – whos a better rapper?2000 January 12, 2000 Nearly five years after the original movie, Next Friday is released following the antics of Craig (Ice Cube) and his cousin Day Day (Mike Epps) when he moves to the suburbs. January 25, 2000 Supreme Clientele, Ghostface Killahs second solo joint, seizes acclaim with high record sells and rave reviews. February 7, 2000 – Big Pun dies at age 28 of a heart attack; his sophomore album, Yeeeah Baby, was released a month later. March 7, 2000 – Trina sets out with her solo debut, Da Baddest B***h. March 14, 2000 It was bigger than Hip-Hop for dead drez whose debut, Lets Get Free served up a steady roster of political, ethnocentric, and conscious tracks including Its Bigger Than Hip-Hop March 26, 2000 Common offers a fresh perspective peppered with hard hitting lyrical concentration, and beats from Jay Dee/J Dilla, on his fourth release, Like Water for Chocolate. April 2000 Dr. Dre sues the filesharing program Napster for the use of his music recordings on the site. After his last album in 99 Ice-T trades rhymes for scripts when he lands a role as Detective Odafin Fin Tutuola on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. May 23, 2000 Eminems The Marshall Mathers LP complete with brash, offensive, yet verbally potent rhymes is released. Despite criticisms over violent and homophobic lyrics, the albums singles, The Way I Am, Stan, and The Real Slim Shady catapult to the charts. May 24, 2000 50 Cent is attacked outside of his grandmothers home in South Jamaica, Queens and shot nine times at close range. June 27, 2000 – A newcomer from St. Louis, Nelly, schools us on country grammar when he releases his debut album and first single both entitled, Country Grammar. June 15, 2000 Comprised of mainly West Coast rappers, The Up in Smoke Tour swarms the country for an entire summer featuring Dr. Dre, Warren G, Xzibit, Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, Ice Cube and Detroits Eminem and D-12. Eminem and Paul Rosenberg establish Shady Records. June 2000 Eminem sees legal troubles again when he is charged with assaulting a member of the rock group, Insane Clown Posse. June 13, 2000 After some label shuffling Slum Village finally releases Fantastic, Vol. 2 on Goodvibe Records. August 18, 2000 – Spike Lees The Original Kings of Comedy becomes a smash hit featuring some of the funniest comedians of our time with Steve Harvey, Bernie Mac, DL Hughly, Cedric the Entertainer. August 29, 2000 – DJ Clue Presents Backstage a compilation of Hip-Hops heavyweights comes out on Roc-a-Fella/Def Jam. September 8, 2000 Jay-Z grants an exclusive look into his Hard Knock Life tour with the uncensored film footage of his high profile Hip-Hop tour. September 13, 2000 Ice Cubes film, Barbershop, features laughs and a star studded cast of Anthony Anderson, Eve, Cedric the Entertainer, etc. September 26, 2000 Bad Boy rapper Shyne drops his self-titled debut album. September 26, 2000 Mystikals Lets Get Ready sets him apart from No Limit as he develops his own following. October 2000 Ol Dirty Bastard escapes from a court mandated drug facility sentenced and goes MIA for a month. October 6, 2000 Spike Lees 2000 dramatic satire about the exploitation of blacks in TV and film Bamboozled is released. It showcases the well rounded cast of Damon Wayans, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michael Rappaport Mos Def, Savion Glover, Tommy Davidson and includes appearances from The Roots, Charlie Baltimore and Paul Mooney. October 10, 2000 Ja Rule releases his far more commercial but heavily successful sophomore album Rule 3:36. October 17, 2000 Hi-Tek and Talib Kweli as Reflection Eternal drop the classic worthy album Train of Thought. October 17, 2000 ATLs Ludacris takes Hip-Hop by storm with his first Def Jam release Back for the First Time featuring the raunchy Whats Your Fantasy. Most of the songs were taken from his first album, Incognegro, which went largely unnoticed. October 31, 2000 – Jay-Z shares a little limelight with some of his up and coming artists on his Dynasty: The Roc La Familia album with songs from Beanie Sigel, Memphis Bleek and Amil. October 31, 2000 OutKast drops Stankonia, a creative explosion of Hip-Hop, funk, and rhythm that spawned hits like B.O.B, Miss Jackson and So Fresh So Clean. November 16, 2000 Houstons DJ Screw, one of the innovators of the chopped and screwed sound dies at age 29 of a codeine overdose. November 21, 2000 – Wu-Tang Clan releases their third album, The W.2001 The Hip-Hop Summit Action Network is founded to increase the awareness of societal and cultural issues that directly influence the Hip-Hop community. February 2001 A shooting erupts between members of Lil Kim and Foxy Browns crews outside of the Hot97 radio station. May 8, 2001 Carmen: A Hip-Hopera, Hip-Hop’s versions of Carmen Jones, stars Beyonce (pre-solo days), Mehki Phifer, Da Brat, and Rah Digga and is televised on MTV. May 15, 2001 Missy Elliott perfects her style and as the party-hoppin (and the random smooth r&b joint) hit maker with her third album, Miss E
So Addictive. June 1, 2001 Bad Boy rapper Jamal Shyne Barrow is sentenced to ten years in prison after being charged for a 1999 shooting at a nightclub June 5, 2001 Making the nation feel mid west swing, the St. Lunatics release Free City which eventually goes platinum. June 19, 2001 – Were re- introduced to Detroits D-12, a rap group affiliated with Eminem whose unorthodox lyrics and blunt rhyming style on Devils Night, earn them a platinum album. June 27, 2001 – Tyrese stars as Jody in the movie Baby Boy with Omar Gooding, Ving Rhames, and Snoop Dogg. Sean Puffy Combs announces he no longer wants to be called Puff Daddy and wants to be known as P. Diddy (this would however not become the last time the business music mogul would change his name). Malik B. a member of The Roots is removed from the group for alleged drug abuse problems. September 2001 After years greeting Phillys morning listeners, shock jock radio host, Wendy Williams returns to New York on WBLS. Immortal Technique shows a more politically and socially aware side of Hip-Hop is far from inactive with his album, Revolutionary Vol.1 (an official version would not be released until 2004). August 25, 2001 At the peak of her singing career, Aaliyah one of R&Bs leading ladies is tragically killed in a plane crash in the Bahamas at age 22. September 11, 2001 Al-Qaeda coordinates attacks on U.S. soil that destroy NYCs World Trade Center and part of The Pentagon. September 11, 2001 Jay-Z releases the critically hailed The Blueprint. All the King of New York chatter reaches a fever pitch. September 11, 2001 – Fabolouss debut album Ghetto Fabolous is released. September 25, 2001 After years penning hits for others, The Neptunes under the moniker N.E.R.D release In Search of
an album that bakes the trios rock, Hip-Hop, and electronic influences into one album. October 2001 – The video game Grand Theft Auto III is released. October 5, 2001 Denzel Washington ditches the hero role when he portrays a crooked cop in Training Day, Washington receives an Oscar for his role in the film. October 9, 2001 T.I. drops his debut, Im Serious, to little fanfare. Your loss if its not in your collection. October 23, 2001 Apple launches the iPod. November 6, 2001 – Representing from North Carolina, Petey Pablos energetic tribute to his home state Raise Up helps push his debut, Diary of a Sinner: 1st Entry up the charts. November 6, 2001 After feeling the love from Hip-Hop, Ludacris drops his second CD, Word of Mouf. November 13, 2001 Ghosface Killah drops Bulletproof Wallets. November 20, 2001 – G. Dep drops Child of the Ghetto on Bad Boy Records. The world had been Harlem Shaking thanks to the vid clip of single “Let’s Get It.” December 4, 2001 Fat Joe drops Jealous Ones Still Envy (J.O.S.E). December 11, 2001 Mobb Deep releases their fifth album Infamy. December 17, 2001 – Method Man and Redman team up for the film How High, a comedy where the two pose as Harvard college students. December 18, 2001 – Nas comes back hard with Stillmatic; the album recaptures Nass keen outlook on Hip-Hop and unparalleled storytelling skills. Showing how deep Hip-Hop could get Jay-Z and Nas exchange scathing dis songs about one another. All allegedly started when Jay cites rhymes both dissing Nas career and exposing his [Jay-Zs] sexual relationship with Nas babys mother, Carmen. In the The Takeover and Super Ugly Jay-Z further questions the Queens rappers ability to stay consistent where Nass Ether is a vicious attack on Jay-Zs persona and his Roc-a-Fella crew . In an attempt to name a winner of the battle Hot97 invites callers to vote on Takeover and Ether, where Ether receives majority vote. December 18, 2001 Iron Flag would be the Wus last album for nearly six years. Suge Knight is released from prison and on the prowl to redevelop Death Row Records.2002 January 18, 2002 Produced by Roc-a-Fella Films, the movie State Property is a street crime thriller as Beanie Sigel portrays a relentless hustler from Philly. February 8, 2002 Monsters Ball where Halle Berry portrays a single mother whose husband (Diddy) is executed is released, Halle Berry would win an Oscar for her role. March 26, 2002 Hip-Hop titan Jay-Z teams up with R&B lothario R.Kelly on the collaborative album, The Best of Both Worlds. April 26, 2002 – Lisa Left Eye Lopes of the best selling R&B group, TLC dies in a car crash in Honduras. May 14, 2002 – Camrons rap career takes off after signing with Roc-a-Fella and dropping his third album, Come Home With Me, which features hits like Hey Ma and Oh Boy. Say hello to Juelz Santana. June 2002 – R. Kelly is singing a different tune when he is charged with 21 counts of child pornography; the charges put a halt on the promotion of The Best of Both Worlds. June 25, 2002 – Nellyville, Nellys second album is responsible for some big hits of 2002 with, Hot in Herre, Pimp Juice, and Dilemma with Kelly Rowland. July 23, 2002 – In response to Juvenile severing ties from Cash Money, Lil Wayne (minus all the star power and record sales he possesses now), releases 500 Degreez declaring hed sell more than Juvy. (He didnt.). May 28, 2002 The Eminem Show drops. The blonde rappers third album featured a far more heavy Hip-Hop tone than his previous albums and becomes the best selling album of 2002. June 11, 2002 AZ drops Aziatic, a refreshing effort after a few releases that failed to live up to the impact of his first album. July 23, 2002 Fifteen years after their debut, Public Enemy releases Revolverlution. August 2002 In a move that would cause him to be called out in several Ludacris songs, Bill OReilly stirs controversy over Pepsis decision to use the rapper for commercials over lyrics the talk show host claims glorify misogyny, violence, and drugs. Pepsi would later remove Ludacris from endorsements. August 6, 2002 Jean Grae, a female emcee with an impressive control of the mic and tight grasp on delivery releases her first album, Attack of the Attacking Things. August 6, 2002 Scarface releases The Fix, which earns a 5 Mic rating in The Source. August 20, 2002 Virginias Clipse drops their debut, Lord Willin. September 24, 2002 – Sean Pauls unique blend of reggae and Hip-Hop leads to his successful album, Dutty Rock, which takes over charts with Get Busy, Gimme the Light and Like Glue. October 5, 2002 The film Brown Sugar starring Taye Diggs and Sanaa Lathan in a Hip-Hop oriented love story is released. October 27, 2002 The videogame Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is released. October 30, 2002 The entire Hip-Hop community is rocked when Jam Master Jay, of the legendary Run-DMC is shot and killed by an unknown suspect at a New York recording studio. November 12, 2002 – Still riding off the fumes of The Blueprint, Jay-Z drops The Blueprint 2: The Gift and The Curse, a double album. September 10, 2002 Disturbing the Peace release Golden Grain, which would eventually go Gold. November 8, 2002 – 8 Mile, a Hip-Hop film loosely based on Eminems life hits theaters. November 12, 2002 Once again teaming up with long time friend and producer, Timbaland, Missy Elliot returns with, Under Construction. November 19, 2002 Talib Kwelis Quality is released spreading a buzz about the rappers tight, neatly packed delivery, best known for the single, Get By. November 22, 2002 – Ice Cube returns to the screen with Friday After Next. Say hello to Money Mike (Katt Williams). November 25, 2002 – Snoop Doggs comedy skit show, Doggy Fizzle Televizzle premiers on MTV showing viewers a different side to the veteran rapper as he delivers laughs every week. November 26, 2002 The Roots drop Phrenology. November 26, 2002 A long way from his earlier gangsta inspired lyrics, Snoops Paid the Cost to Be the Boss emerges as one of his most laid back albums to date; he also gets some help from Pharrell on his number one song, Beautiful. December 2002 Benzino of The Source takes aim at Eminem when he calls him the rap Hitler in his song Die Another Day claiming Eminem is not the essence of true Hip-Hop. Eminem and company fire back with Pull Up Your Skirt and Nail in the Coffin. December 10, 2002 Commons Electric Circus is released and gets lukewarm reviews when many claim he abandons his former sound. December 13, 2002 – Nass God’s Son comes out portraying a more focused, introspective side of Nas. 2003 January 23, 2003- Dave Chapelles brings unfiltered entertainment to TV with Chapelles Show, a sketch comedy program known for his portrayal of Rick James, Tyrone Biggums, Lil Jon and more. February 6, 2003 – 50 Cent drops, Get Rich or Die Tryin, an album that went platinum in a week and would literally would become the soundtrack for 2003 thanks to chart topping songs like, In Da Club, Wankster, and Magic Stick with Lil Kim. February 25, 2003 North Carolinas Little Brother (Big Pooh, Phonte & 9th Wonder) drop their debut, The Listening. March 4, 2003 Lil Kim resurfaces with highly acclaimed third release, La Bella Mafia and teams up with 50 Cent for the hit single Magic Stick. March 11, 2003 The Diplomats release Diplomatic Immunity. April 23, 2003 Tampa rapper, Khias album Thug Misses is released. The album is popularized for her audacious, super-explicit hit single, My Neck My Back. July 22, 2003 Bow Wow drops the Lil and releases his third album, Unleashed. The project is his first album without hit maker Jermaine Dupri. May 2, 2003 Brother Alis Shadows on the Sun while completely off the commercial radar is still hailed as a solid album filled with a poignant delivery and clever wordplay. June 6, 2003 2 Fast 2 Furious a much more urban sequel to The Fast and the Furious, directed by John Singleton arrives to the big screen; the film starred Paul Walker and Tyrese as well as a cameo from Ludacris. June 24, 2003 – Gang Starr releases The Ownerz, the groups last album, to date. July 18, 2003 – Will Smith and Martin Lawrence team up again for Bad Boys II, one of the biggest films of the summer. Rapper, Mystikal and three other men are charged for the sexual assault and extortion of his former stylist Irv Gottis Murder Inc. record label is under federal investigation 50 Cent and Ja Rule engage in what seems a never ending battle exchanging tracks about one another; In Loose Change Ja goes after 50 and the entire Aftermath camp and Busta Rhymes. A week later Eminem and Busta team up to record a retaliation over the Hail Mary beat, where Em goes as far as to say if Pac were here now he would never ride with Ja; 50 Cent continues to take jabs at Ja Rule blasting him for what he felt was sing-songy, R&B songs. August 2003 – The documentary Beef sheds a spotlight on some of the biggest Hip-Hop beefs featuring the whos who of Hip-Hop beefs from the early days to present with: Common, Nas, Cypress Hill, Tupac, Dr. Dre, Kool Moe Dee, Mob Deep, Damon Dash and a litany of other Hip-Hop artists. Eminems credibility is questioned when The Source resurfaces old tapes where a young Marshall Mathers makes racist remarks about black women, Eminem later issues a statement apologizing and claiming his lyrics were in response to a bad breakup with an ex- black girlfriend September 2003 Female rap star, Eve gets her own self-titled sitcom on UPN September 16, 2003 Viktor Vaughn (aka MF DOOM) drops Vaudeville Villain. September 23, 2003 – OutKasts double CD The Love Below/Speakerboxx hits shelves. It proves to be one of the most innovative albums of the year. Andre 3000 raps minimally. September 23, 2003 Under the wing of Eminem, Obie Trices debut, Cheers, is released. October 2003 Kanye West, the man behind some Hip-Hops biggest hits, finally releases his first single, Through the Wire, a song he recorded with his jaw wired shut after a car accident. October 19, 2003 T.I. drops his sophomore album, Trap Muzik, and the rest of the nation finally catches up to the Rubberband Man. November 14, 2003 Tupac: Resurrection one of the most thorough documentaries following Tupac Shakurs life and influence on music is released in theaters. November 14, 2003 – Jay-Z drops The Black Album and tells anyone who will listen it is his last. No one really believes him. November 21, 2003 – Reebok launches a signature line of kicks of Jay-Z called the “S. Carter Collection by Rbk.” November 18, 2003 Immortal Technique releases Revolutionary Vol. 2.