Eleven years after the release of his career-changing mixtape, So Far Gone, it's hard to imagine Drake as anything other than a megastar, but in 2008, the 6ix God wasn't even an idea.

Before he tied the record for the most Billboard Hot 100 appearances in history, Drizzy relied on positive reviews from local Toronto newspapers for validation, reposting the commentary to his October's Very Own blog in an effort to prove his talents. While he'd dropped two mixtapes and collaborated with the likes of Lil Wayne and Trey Songz, in 2008, Drake was still known primarily for being Wheelchair Jimmy from teen soap opera Degrassi.

All of that changed with So Far Gone, a mixtape that set the stage for Drake's career as it introduced the world to his signature combination of introspective bars and R&B-tinged melodies. On the project, the anniversary for which is today, the then-22-year-old Toronto native shares compelling emotional monologues steeped in heartbreak, ego and aspirations.

With icy, atmospheric production from Noah "40" Shebib and emotionally transparent lyrics, So Far Gone permanently erased hip-hop's line between rapping and singing and introduced a potent sound that inspired countless artists.

Reflecting on Drake’s influence over the last decade, The New York Times even credited So Far Gone with being the reason why artists now fuse rapping with singing. "Drake’s So Far Gone mixtape—released in February 2009—marked the arrival of new path: singing as rapping, rapping as singing, singing and rapping all woven together into one holistic whole," the article reads.

Not everyone agreed with The Times’ hot take, but there’s no denying that Drake is one of the biggest voices in hip-hop, a genre seemed to get much more melody-driven at least in part because of the 6ix God.

While Drake's become a superstar today, his backstory, particularly the one surrounding SFG, is one filled with many of the same pitfalls that affect all rising artists at one point or another. Like so many young artists, Drake also faced creative blocks, money issues and time delays. Today, XXL examines some of them.

While fans wait for The Boy's elusive next album, which is believed to be dropping sometime this year, XXL highlights 12 things you probably didn't know about the mixtape that changed everything for the Toronto native.

See 12 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Drake’s So Far Gone Mixtape

More From XXL