Happy Birthday, Timbaland!
Today, March 10, Timbaland, who's one of the music world's most storied producers, turns 46.
Every function needs the right soundtrack, and, if the aux-bearer knows what they're doing, chances are Timbo's a major part of it. Born in Norfolk, Va., Timbaland's first major exposure as a producer came in the form of a 1996 bedroom jam by the name of "Pony," an overtly sexual Ginuwine-sung R&B tune that marked his arrival as a big deal.
From there, Timbo continued to flaunt his production skills with Welcome to Our World, a debut album from himself and his rap partner Magoo. Also included on the project were collabs from Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott and Aaliyah, two artists Timbo would end up working with regularly for years to come.
In the following years, Timbaland, who copped himself a gorgeous $4 million Miami condo in late 2017, would continue to see his career reach new, impossible heights as he became a go-to producer for rap, pop and R&B superstars alike. From 2000 on, he crafted audio canvases for the likes of Jay-Z ("Big Pimpin,'" "Dirt Off Your Shoulders,"), Missy Elliott ("Work It"), Fabolous ("Make Me Better"), 50 Cent ("Ayo Technology"), Petey Pablo ("Raise Up) and countless others.
As a solo artist, Timbo more than held his own, too. Welcome to Our World, his debut effort with Magoo, was a platinum-certified album, and his Keri Hilson-assisted 2007 single, "The Way I Are," was certified triple platinum back in 2013. Clearly, the dude's had a hell of a run.
Today, we salute a living legend. Happy Birthday Timbaland, and here's to many more!
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Ginuwine “Pony” (1996)
Smooth vocals and a distinct beat helped this jam reach No. 1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks.
Timbaland & Magoo feat. Aaliyah and Missy Elliott “Up Jumps Da Boogie” (1997)
The lead single from Welcome to Our World featured the crew of Timbaland, Magoo, Aaliyah and Missy at their finest.
Jay-Z feat. Timbaland “Lobster & Shrimp” (1998)
Both Hov and Timbo were eating well on this track.
Aaliyah "Are You That Somebody?" (1998)
This cut from the Dr. Dolittle may have been the best part of the movie, with the memorable sound of a baby giggling in the back of the track.
Jay-Z “Jigga What, Jigga Who” (1998)
This Timbo beat brought out Jay-Z’s rapidfire flow in a way we’ve rarely heard since.
Missy Elliot feat. Nas, Eve and Q-Tip “Hot Boyz (Remix)” (1999)
This track was one of a handful of reasons Missy Misdemeanor closed out the last millennium with momentum.
The Lox feat. Eve “Ryde or Die Bitch” (1999)
This track managed to be catchy and street at the same time. And the whistling at the beginning was dope.
Jay-Z feat. UGK “Big Pimpin’” (1999)
This party anthem paired Jiggaman with two of the South’s finest in a collabo whose origins Bun B memorably recounts on “The Story.”
Memphis Bleek feat. Jay-Z, Missy Elliott and Twista “Is That Yo Chick” (2000)
With the help of Hov, Missy, Twista and Timbo, this became one of Bleek’s most effective forays into the mainstream.
Nas feat. Ginuwine “You Owe Me” (2000)
Though Nas caught some slack with this Nastradamus single, he, Ginuwine and Timbo had solid chemistry.
Snoop Dogg “Snoop Dogg (What’s My Name Pt. II)” (2000)
The Doggfather teamed with Timbaland to reimagine his early 1990s hit for his final No Limit Records release.
Jay-Z feat. Memphis Bleek “Hey Papi” (2000)
Hov and Bleek let loose on this cut from the Nutty Professor II: The Clumps soundtrack.
Bubba Sparxxx “Ugly” (2001)
The Georgia native stormed onto the scene with this lead single from Dark Days, Bright Nights.
Jay-Z “Hola Hovito” (2001)
This Blueprint cut found Jay spit, “Got rap in a choke-hold, and I won’t surrender it/With beats by Timbaland.”
Ludacris “Rollout (My Business)” (2001)
The lead single to Luda’s second album kept heads rolling and produced a standout music video.
Missy Elliott feat. Ludacris and Jay-Z “One Minute Man (Remix)” (2001)
Hov and Luda offer witty, boastful bars on this mix of R&B and rap.
Petey Pablo “Raise Up” (2001)
This rowdy anthem helped put Petey Pablo and NC on the map.
Petey Pablo "I"
Petey and Timb teamed up again for this single that couldn't quite duplicate the success of "Raise Up."
Missy Elliott “Get Your Freak On” (2001)
Missy and Timbo come through once again.
Fabolous “Right Now & Later On” (2001)
Off Fab’s debut Ghetto Fabolous, this track helped spark a relationship that Loso and Timbo would later recreate.
Missy Elliott “Work It” (2002)
This chart-climber won Video of the Year at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards.
Pastor Troy “Are We Cuttin’” feat. Timbaland, Ms. Jade and CJ (2002)
Troy enlisted Timbo for production purposes on this southern anthem.
Ms. Jade feat. Nelly Furtado and Timbaland “Ching Ching” (2002)
Jade and co. were about their Ching Ching Ching on this single.
Ms. Jade “Feel The Girl” (2002)
This single from Girl Interrupted helped Jade make a small splash in early the 2000s.
Baby feat. Toni Braxton “Baby You Can Do It” (2002)
This airy, string-filled single from Birdman also featured Toni Braxton.
Jay-Z feat. Kanye West “The Bounce” (2002)
This Blueprint 2 head-nodder is one of the few cuts around that features Kanye West on the vocal, but not on the production tip.
Lil Kim feat. Mr. Cheeks “The Jumpoff” (2003)
The lead single from Kimmy Blanco’s La Bella Mafia made some noise on the charts though wasn’t quite as successful as the next single, “Magic Stick.”
Timbaland & Magoo “Indian Flute” (2003)
Timbaland crafts a signature Indian flute into the beat to give it distinct flavor.
Jay-Z “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” (2003)
Anyone who has seen Fade to Black remembers the look on Jay-Z’s face when he first heard this beat; thus, the lasting outcome was really no surprise.
LL Cool J “Headsprung” (2004)
Timbaland helped the New York legend score one of his most successful hits of the decade with this The DEFinition record.
Ludacris “The Potion” (2004)
After Jay-Z passed on the song in a scene shown in Fade to Black, Luda was happy to make it his own.
Cee-Lo feat. Timbaland “I’ll Be Around” (2004)
Timbo lent the hook to this upbeat standout from Cee-Lo Green…Is The Soul Machine.
Lloyd Banks “I’m So Fly” (2004)
The second single from LB’s The Hunger For More was one of a slew of hits from the Queens MC’s debut disc.
The Game “Put You On The Game” (2005)
Game’s lauded debut wouldn’t have been the same without this standout Timbo cut.
Justin Timberlake feat. T.I. “My Love” (2006)
Following the success of “SexyBack,” this cut that peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 solidified Timbo and JT as a force to be reckoned with.
Nelly Furtado feat. Timbaland “Promiscuous” (2006)
Aided by heavy drums and a back and forth from Timb and Ms. Furtado, this joint had radio on lock.
50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake and Timbaland “Ayo Technology” (2007)
The third single from 50’s Curtis cracked the top ten in the Billboard Hot 100.
Fabolous feat. Ne-Yo “Make Me Better” (2007)
This hip-hop soul collabo helped hold down the summer of ’07.
Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson, D.O.E. and Sebastian “The Way I Are” (2007)
This Shock Value single remains one of Timb’s biggest crossover records to date.
Flo Rida feat. Timbaland “Elevator” (2008)
This catchy track helped solidify Flo Rida as one of the kings of hip-pop and reminded us of Timbo’s power in the mainstream.
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