Today, Diplo, as one-half of dancehall duo Major Lazer, released his second album, Free the Universe. The record, which they’ve been teasing for nearly three years (though to be fair, they did deal with some restructuring after founding member Switch left the group) boasts an incredible lineup of featured guests, including Shaggy, Wyclef, Tyga, and Flux Pavilion.
After seeing Diplo and new partner Jillionare tear down Coachella this past weekend, it’s really amazing to see how far he’s come in his (roughly) ten year music career, if you consider his now-famous Hollertronix party in Philly his jumping off point. Not only is Diplo a cultural sponge – he made a feature documentary about the baile funk movement in Brazil – he’s a musical virtuoso who’s as comfortable working with Bruno Mars as he is producing for Snoop Lion.
One thing that’s remained constant in Diplo’s trajectory is his love for hip-hop. From his early days as a DJ, he wasn’t shy about including trap music in his sets before it was cool to do so, and over the years as he’s become a respected producer, he’s been involved in the making of some of hip-hop’s most popular hits and remixes.
To celebrate the release of Free the Universe, we decided to take a look back at Diplo’s best hip-hop moments. And with the Snoop album dropping next week, and Diplo rumored to be working with 2 Chainz, we’re sure there are many more to come.