Today, Aug. 9, is Sha Stimuli's 40th birthday!

The gritty, lyrical rapper is a critical piece to the history of hip-hop. There are too many names to count that have contributed to the fabric of the genre over time, some of which became legends, while others made their mark in the genre. Others came up in rap and grew along with it, getting a crash course in how the game works, while also learning to become a better rapper at the same time. For Sha Stimuli, his upbringing in Brooklyn directly kicked off his career.

Sha spent a lot of time around his older brother Lord Digga, who was a rapper and producer at the time. This togetherness culminated in Digga taking Sha to the Notorious B.I.G.'s Ready To Die sessions. A young Sha soaked these experiences up like a sponge and later became a rapper himself when he was a teenager. His first big look was rapping on Masta Ace's SlaughtaHouse album, under the name Kid Dynamite, then interned for Roc-A-Fella Records in college in 1997.

After college, Sha Stimuli dropped his first mixtape in 2002, Let Me Show You The Way. Years of industry and label troubles held him back from dropping a solo album, but in 2008, he dropped 12 mixtapes, one for each month. The next year saw the release of his debut album My Soul To Keep. He's still dropping music now, with his last full project being 2017's Lazarus.

Happy birthday Sha Stimuli!

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