New York’s Losing the Lion’s Share – 2006 Recap

In the wake of XXL’s 10 Freshmen for ’10 cover, one question kept coming up: What happened to New York? For hip-hop’s first 25 years, the music’s birthplace created dozens of stars. From the Bronx’s KRS-One to Manhattan’s Doug E. Fresh, Brooklyn’s Notorious B.I.G., Queens’s 50 Cent and Staten Island’s Wu-Tang Clan, each borough produced its own legends. Even outlying provinces like Long Island and Yonkers got in on the act, expanding New York rap’s borders with the likes of Public Enemy and DMX.

But that was then. Over the past seven years, the well has gone dry. Since 50 Cent detonated onto the scene with his eight-million-selling megabomb Get Rich or Die Tryin’, New York newcomers have been having a hard time blowing up. In fact, since 50 made his mark in 2003 with both his solo debut and G-Unit group album (Beg For Mercy), only a handful of local rappers have managed to debut in the top 10 of Billboard’s Top 200 albums chart: Juelz Santana (2003’s From Me to U), Sheek Louch (2003’s Walk Witt Me), Loon (2003’s Loon), Lloyd Banks (2004’s The Hunger for More) Tony Yayo (2005’s Thoughts of a Predicate Felon) and Mims (2007’s Music Is My Savior). And only Lloyd Banks (2004’s “On Fire”), Mims (2007’s “This Is Why I’m Hot,”) and Lil Mama (2008’s “Lip Gloss”) have had a first single break the top 10 of the Hot 100 singles.

In XXL’s May issue, which is on stands now, we went searching the five boroughs, as well as Long Island and Yonkers, in search of some answers as to how New York fell into a hip-hop drought. But over the course of the next few days, we’ll give a year-by-year breakdown of the music that came out of the Big Apple and how it stacked up against the rest of the hip-hop nation.

Men lie, women lie, but numbers don’t…

In 2006, 33 hip-hop albums debuted in the top 10 of Billboard’s top 200, 11 of which came from New York artists


FishScale, Ghostface Killah

Todd Smith, LL Cool J

Blood Money, Mobb Deep

Killa Season, Cam’Ron

The Big Bang, Busta Rhymes

Year Of The Dog…Again, DMX

4:21… The Day After, Method Man

Rotten Apple, Lloyd Banks

Press Play, Diddy

Hustler’s P.O.M.E. (Product Of My Environment), Jim Jones

Kingdom Come, Jay-Z


On Top Of Our Game, Dem Franchize Boyz

King, T.I.

New Joc City, Yung Joc

Idlewild, OutKast

Best Thang Smokin’, Young Dro

Release Therapy, Ludacris

The Inspiration, Young Jeezy


My Ghetto Report Card, E-40

Laugh Now, Cry Later, Ice Cube

Doctor’s Advocate, The Game

Tha Blue Carpet Treatment, Snoop Dogg


Reality Check, Juvenile

The Heart Of Tha Streetz, Vol. 2 (I Am What I Am), B.G.

Like Father, Like Son, Birdman & Lil Wayne


Second Round’s On Me, Obie Trice

Eminem Presents: The Re-Up, Various Artists


Pimpalation, Pimp C


In My Mind, Pharrell


Port Of Miami, Rick Ross


Game Theory, The Roots


Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor, Lupe Fiasco


Hoodstar, Chingy

Out of the 33 hip-hop albums to debut in the top 10 of Billboard’s top 200 in 2006, none were from new New York artists dropping their first album.

In 2006, 17 hip-hop singles reached the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100, 4 of which came from New York artists.


“Come to Me” – Diddy Featuring Nicole Scherzinger

“Show Me What You Got” – Jay-Z

“Control Myself” – LL Cool J

“We Fly High” – Jim Jones

Out of the 17 hip-hop singles to reach the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100 in 2006, none were from a new New York artists.

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  • esco702

    Ghostface nuff said….

  • AZ40

    is it me or does that last stat make no sense?

    • Anslem

      The last stat refers to NEW artists from New York to hit the charts. There were OLD artists but no new ones.

      The point was to illustrate that no new artists of note have emerged from New York in a minute, except MIMS & Lil Mama. From a commercial stand point of course.

      The same stat has been running in each of the years…

  • swype-matic

    Anybody who DIDN’T vote Ghostface’s album as the best of ’06 is foolin’ themselves.

  • mike4282

    2006 was (in my eyes) the beginning of the fall of quality Hip Hop overall.

    G-unit was losing, rappers were trying to make comebacks but should STAY retired(Jay-Z turned out to be the exception), and I didn’t even bother with copping let alone listen to my favorite Hip Hop Duo Outkast’s Idlewild.

    Wait…if i’m mistaken Eminem had went on a hiatus that year? Am I wrong?

    Uhgh, like Jay-Z said “On to the next one”…

    • swype-matic

      That is true about the overrall quality of hip hop starting to fall, cuz just in ’05, there was a good even balance to hip hop, everybody was goin’ platinum and there was good consistent underground and mainstream/radio music out

  • t-mart

    The album debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 355,880 copies in its first week

    Which is Nas hip hop is dead !!!???


  • T-mart

    stop making posts on your smoke break your stats are fucking retarded. WHO CARES???

  • $yk

    I see you t-mart. Real talk swype & mike.

    “Hip Hop Is Dead is the eighth studio album by American rapper Nas, released December 15, 2006 on Def Jam Recordings.”

    “The album’s title was inspired by Nas’s view of the music industry and the state of hip hop music at the time.”

    ^ what an accurate view, no?

    “The album debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 355,880 copies in its first week.”

    ^ this kills them big ass ‘zero’ stats that are up.

    But y’all got Jay’s face posted, big as hell, showing what people have considered as one of his “flops”.

    Terrible oversight.

  • macinntrappin

    stop crying new york make hits damn this shit has gotten i know some rap …………..ok alot nowadays r just ignorant…………but beside jay who up there make hits ……………what happened to papoose………..even i thought new york would be back by now mabey slaughterhouse i’ll do it

  • DoubleClutch95

    Clipse Dropped Hell Hath No Fury and got a XXL from this magazine. Why aren’t they listed???

    • Anslem

      Because the album didn’t chart on Billboard. Not all the albums are listed but the ones that made debuted on the Billboard Top 200 and Hot 100 as listed before each stat.

  • newyawka631

    XXL is str8 fugazi……First Bow-wow is from Atlanta,then u forget about Nas Escobar…I bet if we really sit here and think about it,you probably forgot catz from all regions..If you are going to make articles like this,do ya fuckin homework….Ya losing that ” street cred” word to my man Papoose..Word up..Peace to all regionz of this hip-hop shit….

    • Anslem

      Like was laid out in an earlier year, Bow’s career started in Atlanta, same with Luda (who’s from Chicago) and Xzibit is from Detroit but reps Cali. Do you really think Ohio when you think Bow Wow?

  • $yk

    “I bet if we really sit here and think about it,you probably forgot catz from all regions..If you are going to make articles like this,do ya fuckin homework….Ya losing that ” street cred” word to my man Papoose..Word up..Peace to all regionz of this hip-hop shit….”

    ^ troofis

    yawka what’s poppin’ fam?

    Anslem I see you. I see your ‘new’ argument, but the ratio of the guys listed above overwhelms new artists, in all regions. Why is this ‘new’ thing a magnified discrepancy only for NY artists?

    • Anslem

      Because this is a online component of the article from the magazine, which talks about how New York lost it’s position. This series is actually listing the albums that made up a specific pie chart sidebar in the book to highlight what New York did on the charts & to illustrate that no one new has emerged from New York in a minute, it’s the same artists over and over.

      Actually, the opening line of this series in intro kinda lays that out, because some folks wondered how there could be no new New York artists on the Freshmen 10 cover, this points out that there aren’t any and for some time.

  • ShowTime NY

    Who does the editing Onlie? This shit is full of errors and questionable stats. Put those dam commas where they need to be.

    And if Nas was left out there are probably more errors.

    Also, as much as there are, no New NY artist, most of the albums on the chart were from the NY area.

    And wheres the stats of New artist from other areas, that hit top ten on the charts, to compare with the zero Ny artist.

    Just a shotty Job in general.

    • Anslem

      Actually posted a comment yesterday but it didn’t show up (it happens to me too) but Nas’ album dropped Dec 19 of 2006, so his sales run really spilled into 07 so he was placed in the following year from a stats stand point.

      As for the other debut artists from other regions, that wasn’t the point of a chart and article (both in the magazine) exploring why and how NY fell off.

      And you can easily look up at the albums section to see what albums from other regions came out and ascertain who some of the new artists were from other regions (i.e. Yung Joc).

  • Kenny D

    I voted Ghostface cuz all the other albums sucked. Anyone voting Kingdom Come needs to get off Hov’s dick. That album was garbage. In fact, that album hurt Jay’s career. For single’s I had to vote (ugggghhh) We Fly High, cuz New York laid an egg in 2006. Still, I don’t get why they didn’t include Nas’ Hip Hop is Dead. That album came out in December. Number 1 album overall was between Ice Cube’s Laugh Now Cry Later and T.I.’s King.

  • Kenny D

    Nevermind bout Cube and T.I. having the best album. Lupe’s was way better than both of theirs.


    DIPSET BITCH!!!!!!
    killa season was #1. the re-up was raw tho. eminem needs better artists.

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