Today In Hip-Hop: 50 Cent Releases “How To Rob”
On this day, August 10, in hip-hop history...
1999: Before he was a platinum-selling recording artist, 50 Cent was another Queens hustler looking to make a name for himself in the rap game. Enter his 1999 debut single, "How To Rob", off his unreleased debut album, Power Of The Dollar, on Columbia Records. One of the most brazen, underground singles of all-time, "How To Rob" found 50 Cent fantasizing about robbing a laundry list of hip-hop elite in humorous fashion.
Produced by the Trackmasters and featuring hip-hop producer D-Dot reprising his role as the infamous Madd Rapper, 50 Cent's debut single was hilariously ballsy in its audacity to name name's and was so good that it ruffled more than its fair share of feathers across the music industry. The song garnered responses from Jay Z, Sticky Fingaz, Wyclef Jean, Big Pun and perhaps, most memorably from a vocally-distorted Raekwon on "Clyde Smith" from Ghostface Killah's Supreme Clientele. The sheer number of responses from his rapper brethren seemed to indicate that 50 Cent arrived.
However, 50 Cent's criminal ties to the streets caught up with him and a few months after the release of the single, he was shot nine times outside his home in Queens. Soon after, his label, Columbia Records, dropped him after he became more trouble than he was worth. This would not be the end of 50 Cent as a few years later, he would recover from his wounds and sign a joint deal with Eminem and Dr. Dre at Shady/Aftermath and go on to become one of the most commercially successful rappers of all-time after the release of his official debut record, Get Rich Or Die Tryin' in the winter of 2003.