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The Week Ahead in Hip-Hop: March 14, 2016 – March 20, 2016

As the saying goes, “You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been.”  Here is a look at notable events that took place in Hip-Hop this week from years past.

Monday, March 14: 2Pac’s Me Against the World Turns 21

On this day in 1995, while serving time in prison, Tupac Shakur released his album, Me Against the World.  It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 by selling 240,000 copies its first week of release.  It is also noteworthy that 2Pac became the first artist to have an album debut at the top of the charts while incarcerated.

Tuesday, March 15: Rest In Peace, Nate Dogg

Five years ago today, Hip-Hop lost one of its most memorable voices.  Nathaniel Hale, better known as Nate Dogg, passed away in Long Beach, California due to complications which arose after several strokes.  He collaborated with several high-profile artists during his career, and one of his biggest hits was the Grammy-nominated single, “Regulate” with Warren G.

Wednesday, March 16: The Diamond Certification is Introduced

17 years ago, the Recording Industry Association of America introduced the Diamond certification for the sale of 10 million albums or singles.  Artists in Hip-Hop which have earned this certification for their work include (but aren’t limited to) Tupac, Biggie, Eminem, and OutKast.

Thursday, March 17: Happy Birthday, Swifty

Not only is it St. Patrick’s Day, it’s also the born day of D12 member, Swifty.  After upwards of a  decade since the group’s last major label album, the Dirty Dozen came back strong this past fall with the release of The Devil’s Night Mixtape and are still riding the wave of its success.  “We back on our bulls**t, we spazzin’ on ‘em again / With gold paper, insulated booth, and platinum pen.”

Friday, March 18: Happy Birthday, Queen Latifah

Today marks the birthday of Hip-Hop icon and actress Queen Latifah.  In addition to being a Grammy winning rapper (“U.N.I.T.Y.”), she also received an Oscar nomination in the Best Supporting Actress category in 2002 for her role in Chicago.  More recently, she received positive reviews as the Wiz in The Wiz Live! which aired in December 2015.

Saturday, March 19: The Trials and Tribulations of Russell Jones is released 

In 2002, D-3 Records releases the  ‘Ol Dirty Bastard compilation album, The Trials and Tribulations of Russell Jones.

Sunday, March 20: Happy Birthday, Spike Lee

Acclaimed filmmaker Spike Lee celebrates his birthday today.  Among many other notable achievements, he has been the recipient of an Academy Honorary Award.  His most recent film, Chi-Raq, garnered mostly positive reviews.  However, one Chicago native who has been very opposed the film is Chance the Rapper.  The two have been feuding since the movie’s release late last year.

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