On this day, July 1, in hip-hop history...

Bad Boy Records
Bad Boy Records

1997: Puff Daddy took Bad Boy Records to the next level when Puff Daddy and the Family released their debut album, No Way Out on July 1, 1997.

Although Bad Boy had been established since 1993 and already supplied the hip-hop world with hit-making greats like Craig Mack, Faith Evans and the Notorious B.I.G., Puff Daddy brought all of his in-house talent together on one LP for his own debut work. The 17-track project showed off Puff's producing skills as well as his artistry and grief.
Puff was half way through creating the album when his friend, Bad Boy's flagship artist and hip-hop icon, Notorious B.I.G., was shot to death March 9, 1997. Puff used his pain as inspiration for much of the album itself. As a tribute to his late friend, Puff dropped "I'll Be Missing You" one of the lead singles off the album, along with "Can't Hold Me Down," "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" and "Been Around the World."

No Way Out debut at number one on the Billboard 200, selling more than 500,000 copies in its first week. It would eventually sell five million copies and Puff would carry out a 35-city tour grossing $14.7 million in support of it.

The album was such a hit that Puff took home the 1998 Grammy Award for Best Rap Album and XXL declared Puff as 1997's 'Man of the Year.'

Celebrating over 20 years in the hip-hop industry, Puff Daddy, now known as Diddy, reunited all of his 1990's Bad Boy artists for a musical reunion of epic proportions at the 2015 BET Awards, went on a summer tour on honor of the reunion and most recently released a documentary about the story of the Bad Boy label, Can't Stop Won't Stop

"Bad Boy for life!"

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