What’s in a name? If you’re Sean “Diddy” Combs: money. Through the years, the Harlem native has transformed from party promoter to CEO, and everything in between. Despite his various name changes, one thing has remained constant, and that’s the Bad Boy’s ability to make paper. As one of the richest figures in hip-hop, with a net worth estimated at more than $400 million. Diddy recently announced he will switch his name to Swag for one week. Today (May 27) marks Puff’s last day as Swag. Since the mogul is all about his Dirty Money, XXL looks back at previous monikers to see which alias was the most profitable.
- His debut single, “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down” spent six weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
- His debut LP, No Way Out, peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and won the 1998 Grammy Award for Best Rap Album.
- His second single, “I’ll Be Missing You,” in memory of The Notorious B.I.G., debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
- In 1997, with Jay-Z, Lil Kim and the rest of the Bad Boy family serving as his supporting cast, Puff embarked on the highly lucrative No Way Out tour.
- In 1998, he introduced the name of his fashion line, Sean John.
- Released gold and platinum albums from Craig Mack, The Notorious B.I.G., Total, 112, Ma$e, Black Rob, Carl Thomas, Faith Evans and Shyne on Bad Boy.
In 2001, after his acquittal on gun possession and bribery charges, Combs changed his stage name from Puff Daddy to P. Diddy.
- In 2001, the bad boy appeared in the film Made, and starred with Halle Berry and Billy Bob Thornton in Monster’s Ball.
- In 2002, Puff was an opening act for ‘N Sync on their Celebrity 2002 tour.
- In 2002, the Harlem shaker was featured on Fortune magazine’s “40 Richest People Under 40″ list, and named No. 1 as the publication listed the 10 richest people in hip-hop.
- In October of 2002, Making the Band 2 debuted on MTV with Diddy as the show’s new host.
- In 2004, Combs headed the campaign “Vote or Die.”
- Released albums from Da Band, Loon, Mario Winans, New Edition, 8Ball & MJG and Ma$e’s comeback album on Bad Boy.”
On August 16, 2005, the mogul appeared on the Today show and announced that he was altering his stage name yet again, dropping the “P.” and referring to himself simply as Diddy. He stated the P was getting between him and his fans.
- SJC starred in the 2004 Broadway revival of A Raisin in the Sun.
- In 2005, he landed a role in the film, Carlito’s Way: Rise to Power.
- He sold a 50 percent stake of his record company to the Warner Music Group in 2005.
- Diddy hosted the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards.
- Sean Combs was named one of the 100 Most Influential People of 2005 by Time magazine.
- On October 17, 2006, the Puffster released his first album in four years, Press Play.
- In 2006 his estimated worth was $346 million (U.S. currency).
- In October 2007, Combs inked a multi-year deal to promote Ciroc, one of Diageo PLC’s super-premium Vodka lines, for a 50–50 share in the profits. Diageo said the agreement could be worth more than $100 million for Combs and his company, Sean Combs Enterprises, over the course of the deal.
- In 2008, he acquired his own VH1 series, I Want to Work for Diddy.
- In October 2008, Combs acquired the Enyce clothing line from Liz Claiborne for $20 million.
- Released albums from Yung Joc, Danity Kane, Janelle Monae, Day26, Elephant Man and Gorilla Zoe on Bad Boy.
- May 19, 2011 debuted @IAMSWAG
- May 20, 2011 announced a new Ciroc drink, “The McSwag,” which incorporates McDonald’s frozen strawberry lemonade and Ciroc.
It looks like this one is pretty close. What’s your favorite Sean Combs moniker?