By Gemtracks StaffApr 4th, 2022
Imagine being a recording artist. For a cheap $149, buy one-off beats by top producers to use in your songs.
Gemtracks is a marketplace for original beats and instrumental backing tracks you can use for your own songs.
Choose a Genre
By the time the new millennium rolled around, hip-hop was already about 25 years old. Hip-hop began in the 1970s when rapping, blues, and spoken word artistry collided with the burgeoning DJ scene. Magic happened on the streets of the Bronx when people like Afrika Bambaataa and DJ Kool Herc began hosting street parties that included DJ's dropping beats and MC's making toasts. The first true hip-hop songs were recorded in the late 70s and the genre became even more popular throughout the 80s and 90s. But with the new millennium, it was about to undergo some radical changes.
Hip-Hop in the 2000s
By the turn of the 21st century, the music industry was in crisis. Digital downloading had caused the industry to re-evaluate nearly everything that it was doing. With hip-hop, two things happened. First, sales fell throughout the decade. Secondly, however, the genre became more dominant, especially amongst younger people. Several genres began drawing on hip-hop's sounds and styles, and several more genres like R&B and gospel integrated almost completely with hip-hop styles. People like R. Kelly and Mary J. Blige were as much hip-hop stars as they were the stars of gospel and R&B.
The early 2000s saw the creative center of hip-hop relocated to the southern United States. No Limit Records and Cash Money were two recording companies based in New Orleans that began releasing material from increasingly successful rappers of the Dirty South genre. And experimental groups like OutKast went mainstream. Dr. Dre and his protege Eminem were crucial figures and enjoyed huge successes, and 50-Cent would achieve multiplatinum success with Get Rich or Die Tryin' in 2003.
Two further things went on as the decade progressed. Hip-hop evolved into the pop music of the day, and it also evolved away from verbal dexterity and poetry towards a more producer/DJ-centric medium. Many were dissatisfied with this direction, so much so that in 2006 Nas released Hip Hop Is Dead in protest to what Nas thought of as the decline in quality of hip-hop, mainly casting blame at the feet of Southern hip-hop with its penchant for snap music and crunk.
Regardless, hip-hop's rise was far from dead and far from over. Many new successful figures began to emerge at this time, especially from the south. Lil Wayne, Jay-Z, Kanye West, emerged as the most powerful voices of hip-hop as the music genre immersed itself in the wider culture.
Now let's take a look at some of the individual artists that made hip-hop in the first decade of the new millennia what it was.
No one represents the cultural triumph that hip-hop made better than Jay-Z. His career progressed from drug dealer to performing artist, to label president, to the head of his own clothing line, owner of clubs and market consultancy businessâ€¦ all while shattering Evil Presley's record for most No. 1 solo artist records. In 2008 then-presidential candidate Barack Obama would make references to Jay-Z during his campaigns and Jay-Z would take some of the credit for the Obama victory on his 2009 Album The Blueprint 3. The late 1990s already saw Jay-Z make a name for himself as one of the most successful acts in hip-hop, but his albums of the 2000s solidified this. Beginning the decade with The Dynasty: Roc La Familia which produced one of his most successful singles "I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me)", the album debuted at No. 1 and would be certified 2x Multiplatinum. He would finish the decade just as strongly with The Blueprint 3, also debuting at No. 1.
Marshall Bruce Mathers III was one of the best-selling (and most controversial) music artists of the early 21st century. After a difficult and chaotic childhood, Eminem would come to the attention of Dr. Dre after his freestyle performances in the 1997 L.A. Rap Olympics. As his mentor, Dre would help Eminem release The Slim Shady LP just in time for the new millennia. The Album would win two Grammy's and launch his career. The next few years would prove just as difficult with his rocky relationship with Kim Scott and his mother, who would sue him for defamation. The Marshall Mathers LP was released in 2000 and became the fastest-selling album by a rap artists to that point, and 2002 saw both the release of the equally popular album The Eminem Show as well as his acting debut in the hugely successful film 8 Mile. He would win an Oscar for the song Lose Yourself which he wrote for the movie. His next two albums failed to replicate the success he had been enjoying and for much of the rest of the decade he would retreat from the public eye.
West began his career as one of Jay-Z's producers and would come to be one of the more fascinating (and polarizing) characters in the hip-hop genre. His 2004 album The College Dropout was a smash success. While it was experimental musically it was also fashion-forward, and debut at number two on the Billboard 200. It would go on to sell over 4 million copies and has been named one of the greatest albums of all time. By the late 2000s West's penetrating lyrics, which were both humorous and deeply personal, came to represent the great possibilities of mainstream hip-hop. However, as the years rolled on he came to be a polarizing figure with his endless self-promotion and frequent arrogance. West would release several more albums during that decade, culminating in 2010s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy which debuted at No.1 and won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Album.
Regarded as one of the most influential rappers who ever lived, Lil Wayne grew up in the poor neighborhood of New Orleans's 17th Ward. He was a gifted child and by the time he was 14 had already come to the attention of record labels. After producing several albums with Hot Boys, Wayne would release his first solo album Tha Block is Hot when he was only 17. It would debut at No. 3 on Billboard's 200, but his next two albums failed to gain him much success. 2004's Tha Carter and 2005's Tha Carter II solidified his success as one of the best artists recording in southern hip-hop. Tha Carter III would sell more than a million copies in its first week of release and contained the popular singles 'A Milli' and 'Lollipop'. In 2009 he would take home a Grammy for Best Rap Album, Best rap Song, and Best Rap Solo Performance.
Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones was a dominant voice of 90s East-Coast hip-hop and built his reputation as a rapper and chronicler of the street life of the inner city. His popularity was sustained throughout the 2000s. Nas began the first decade of the 2000s in a feud with none other than Jay-Z over which one of them was the premier voice of East Coast rap. 2001's Stillmatic and 2002's God's Son were both commercial successes. After settling their difference, Jay-Z signed Nas to Def Jam, and he released the controversial Hip Hop Is Dead in 2006, topping the charts, making it his fourth US No. 1. Nas has been praised for his lyric writing and production styles and has ranked highly on several lists of best lyricists of all time. His album Illmatic is considered one of the greatest hip-hop albums ever recorded.
The success of OutKast bridges the 1990s hip-hop and the hip-hop of the early 2000s. The group was formed in 1992 and is responsible for putting Atlanta on the map in terms of hip-hop and rap. With their melodies, lyrics and positive/playful messages OutKast redefined what hip-hop could be. The duo is made up of André 3000 and Bib Boi who met in high school. 1994 saw them release their first album Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik to critical and commercial success. ATLiens followed in 1996 and sold nearly 2 million copies. 1998's Aquemini would produce the single Rosa Parks and earn them a Grammy nomination. Their success and influence continued throughout the 2000s with their fourth and fifth albums, Stankonia and Speakerboxxx/The Love Below which pushed further and further what was possible in the genre. 2007 saw the group disband and the two began to work on solo projects before reuiniting to tour again in 2014.
In 2001 T.I (born Clifford Joseph Harris Jr.) formed P$C with fellow Atlanta-based rappers and eventually became CEO of Atlantic Records imprint Grand Hustle Records. T.I. also helped pioneer the subgenre of trap music, which uses primarily synthesized drum machines with few other instruments, and is lyrically focused on urban life and drug issues. T.I. invented the term with his album Trap Muzik of 2003 and it has since gone on to be one of the most popular forms of hip-hop. With three Grammy's to his name and 11 chart-topping albums, T.I. is one of the most influential hip-hop artists of the early aughts.
Born Curtis James Jackson III, 50 Cent was a rising star of the underground circuit for many years before he released his first single 'Wangsta' in 2002. This song, which appeared on the 8 Mile soundtrack, reached No. 13 on the Billboard Hot 100. 2003 saw him release his acclaimed debut Get Rich or Die Tryin which debut at No. 1 and was the best-selling album of 2003 and is regarded as one of the greatest albums of all time. The success of this album brought 50 Cent a lot of press and his life became front and center. Growing up on the streets of the South Jamaica neighborhood of Queens, New York, he began dealing drugs at a very young age during the crack epidemic of the 1980s. He was shot 9 times before began pursuing a music career in the late 90s early 2000s.
Ludacris was born Christopher Bridges in Champaign, Illinois, and is a cousin of famed comedian Richard Pryor. Ludacris has been rapping and making music since the 1990s, first forming his own record label and then signing with Def Jam South. His first album, 1999's Incognegre was a mild success, but his second Back for the First Time and all proceeding albums would be multi-platinum best-sellers. He has also starred in several films, including his recurring role in The Fast and the Furious series as Tej Parker. With three Grammy Awards under his belt it's no surprise he has studied music management at Georgia State University before dropping out to pursue his music full time.
Last but not least, Nelly was one of the biggest stars of the new millennia and ranks as one of the top five best-selling rap artists ever with 21 million albums sold. Born Cornell Iral Haynes Jr., Nelly he began his solo career with the 2000 debut Country Grammar whose single 'Ride wit Me' was a top ten hit. He followed that with 2002's Nellyville which debuted at No. 1 in the US and two of its singles topped the charts. Nelly has performed twice at the Super Bowl halftime show, once in 2001 and again in 2004, a year which also saw the release of two albums Sweat and Suite. Suit was an R&B album and debuted at No. 1, while Sweat was a rap album and debuted at No. 2. Nelly's influence is still felt today. He was one of the first artists to perfect sing/rapping, and one of the first regional rappers to prove commercial outside of traditional rap territories. He was also known for wearing a Bad-Aid on his face.
Another fantastic sale. I'm very satisfied! Thanks again.
Seller has the most incredible beat I have ever heard. Very easy to browse!
This producer/DJ is a freaking BEAST! I wasn't expecting something so great at such reasonable price!
Choose a Genre
Already making good music?
Submit to Playlists
5 Proven Steps to Succeed in the Music Business
Get your FREE eBook on how to skyrocket your music career
Prev: All About Music Metadata in Music Production 2022 You MUST Know
Next: Proven Ways to Get Nominated for a Grammy in 2022
Eminem was the 2000s' top-selling artist with 32.2 million combined in sales, plus two albums in the decade's Top 10: The Marshall Mathers LP was fourth with 10,195,000 sold and Eminem Show was fifth with 9,789,000.What was the number 1 hip-hop song in 2000? ›
2000. According to Billboard, the top 3 Songs for 2000 were: Independent Women Part I by Destiny's Child, Ms. Jackson by OutKast, and I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me) by JAY-Z.Who was the biggest rapper in 2005? ›
2005 was peak 50 Cent and G-Unit. Not only did 50 have the biggest selling album of the year when he dropped his sophomore, he also had the platinum-selling soundtrack for Get Rich or Die Tryin' and featured heavily on The Game's debut.Who is the most influential rapper in the last 10 years? ›
Lil Wayne entered the 2010s as the undisputed king of rap, and so many of today's most important artists took cues from his reign. The traits that made Wayne a rap icon are in the creative DNA of artists across the hip-hop spectrum.Who Won 2000s Artist of the Decade? ›
In December 1999, Billboard published decade-end lists based on statistical performances on weekly Billboard charts, with Mariah Carey being dubbed the Pop Artist of Decade. Other artists receiving the honor in the following decades are Eminem (2000s) and Drake (2010s).Who won Artist of the Decade 2000's? ›
Previous Artist of the Decade winners include Eminem, who won for the 2000s, and Mariah Carey, who won for the 1990s.What was the #1 song of the 2000s? ›
Mariah Carey earned four number-one singles, including the best-performing single of the decade "We Belong Together". Alicia Keys scored four number-one entries, totaling 22 weeks atop the chart.What was the #1 rap song in 2005? ›
|Single||Artist||Reached number one|
|"Like You"||Bow Wow featuring Ciara||September 10, 2005|
|"Gold Digger"||Kanye West featuring Jamie Foxx||October 8, 2005|
|"Soul Survivor"||Young Jeezy featuring Akon||November 5, 2005|
|"I Think They Like Me"||Dem Franchize Boyz featuring Jermaine Dupri, Da Brat and Bow Wow||December 17, 2005|
- Breathe - Faith Hill.
- Smooth - Santana featuring Rob Thomas.
- Say My Name - Destiny's Child.
- I Wanna Know - Joe.
- Everything You Want - Vertical Horizon.
- Maria Maria - Santana featuring The Product G&B.
- Bent - Matchbox Twenty.
- Amazed - Lonestar.
Rapper Eminem's "Lose Yourself" was the longest-running number-one single released in 2002.
Sales numbers from Nielsen SoundScan reveal Em beat the Beatles in the '00s. Back in 1999, Eminem was best known as the slightly screwy, bottle-blond protégé of Dr.Who dominated music in the 2000s? ›
Artists such as Eminem, OutKast, The Black Eyed Peas, T.I., 50 Cent, Kanye West, Nelly, Nas, Jay-Z, Ghostface Killah, Snoop Dogg, Missy Elliott, M.I.A., Lil' Kim, Gorillaz, Young Jeezy, Lil Wayne, The Game, and Ludacris were among the dominant mainstream hip hop artists to have represented the hip hop genre for the ...Who was Artist of the Decade 2010? ›
It's official. Drake will be honored as the Artist of the Decade for the 2010s during the 2021 Billboard Music Awards, slated to air May 23.Who was the biggest rapper in 2008? ›
50 Cent is #1 on Forbes' 2008 Hip-Hop Cash Kings, making $150 million last year for his Vitamin Water deal, his sales of Curtis, and his G-Unit clothing, and his record label. Following behind is Jay-Z at #2, Diddy at #3, and Kanye West at #4. Common, Akon, & Lil Wayne made first time showings on the list.Who was the biggest rapper in 2007? ›
2007 was one hell of a diverse affair for hip-hop. It was the year Lil Wayne was announcing his immediate arrival as the Best Rapper Alive, it was the year 50's run was finally over, it was the year Jay-Z truly made his comeback and it was also the year of Kanye West.Who is the king of rap 2000s? ›
The King Of Rap: Eminem
The magazine narrowed down the list to Eminem, Lil Wayne, Drake, Kanye West, and Jay-Z to choose the King Of Rap of the 2000s. Among all those rappers, Eminem's albums were the ones consistently hitting the charts and are always the reference points for the hip-hop genre.
- The Notorious B.I.G. Death at a young age can often elevate a rapper from modern-day star to bona fide legend.
- Jay-Z. Jay-Z's nimble flow used to be a lot less relaxed, as evidenced by the rapid delivery on his 1996 debut Reasonable Doubt. ...
- Eminem. ...
- Rakim. ...
- Nas. ...
- Andre 3000. ...
- Lauryn Hill. ...
- Ghostface Killah. ...
- 1 Snoop Dogg97%
- 2 Kanye West96%
- 3 Eminem94%
- 4 Ice Cube94%
- 5 Jay-Z93%
- 6 Vanilla Ice92%
- 7 MC Hammer91%
- 8 50 Cent90%
- 2Pac. Tupac Amaru Shakur also known by his stage names 2Pac and Makaveli, was an American rapper. ...
- Eminem. ...
- The Notorious B.I.G. ...
- Jay-Z. ...
- Nas. ...
- Rakim. ...
- Kendrick Lamar. ...
- Lil Wayne.
Cassper Nyovest haters and critics better be ready to eat their words after the rapper emerged victorious and won the highly coveted "Artist of the Decade" at the SA Hip Hop Awards.
Billboard Music Award for Artist of the DecadeWho won Artist of the Decade 1990s? ›
Mariah Carey was declared the Artist of the Decade of the 1990s by Billboard.Who won the most Grammys in 2000? ›
Nominations were announced on January 4, 2000. Santana was the main recipient with eight Grammys, tying Michael Jackson's record for most awards won in a single night. Santana's album Supernatural was awarded a total of nine awards.Who is the biggest selling artist since 2000? ›
Adele's 21 is the best-selling album of the 21st century to date, with sales of over 31 million copies worldwide. Her third album 25, is also on the list with sales of over 23 million copies.Who has won the most Grammys since 2000? ›
Who has the most Grammys? Georg Solti holds the record for most Grammy awards, having received 31 in his career, according to the Recording Academy. The orchestra conductor also holds the record for most wins in the classical field.What was voted best song of 2000s? ›
- 'Dirrty' – Christina Aguilera. ...
- 'Date with the Night' – Yeah Yeah Yeahs. ...
- 'Dry Your Eyes' – The Streets. ...
- '22 Grand Job' – The Rakes. ...
- 'What's Your Fantasy' – Ludacris feat Shawnna. ...
- 'Don't Mess with My Man' – Lucy Pearl. ...
- 'Two Doors Down' – Mystery Jets. ...
- 'Wearing My Rolex' – Wiley.
My Love (feat. T.I.) Justin TimberlakeT.I.What was the #1 hit song in 2004? ›
Usher And Alicia Keys, “My Boo”
1 of the year.
|"Slow Jamz"||Twista & Kanye West featuring Jamie Foxx||1|
|"Drop It Like It's Hot"||Snoop Dogg featuring Pharrell Williams|
|"The Way You Move"||OutKast featuring Sleepy Brown|
|"Slow Motion"||Juvenile featuring Soulja Slim|
Beyoncé's "Irreplaceable" was at number one at the start of 2007.What was the #1 song in 2010? ›
For 2010, the list for the top 100 Billboard Hot 100 Year-End songs was published on December 8, calculated with data from December 5, 2009 to November 27, 2010. At the number-one position was Kesha's "Tik Tok", which stayed atop the Hot 100 for nine weeks.What were 3 of the popular songs of the 2000's? ›
20 Great Songs from the Early 2000s
- "Hey Ya!" - OutKast. ...
- "Bye Bye Bye" - *NSYNC. ...
- "Toxic" - Britney Spears. ...
- "Hollaback Girl" - Gwen Stefani. ...
- "Crazy In Love" - Beyoncé (feat.
Nickelback's "How You Remind Me" which spend four weeks at number between 2001 and 2002, was the number one song of 2002.What was the number 1 song in 2003? ›
50 Cent's "In da Club" took the top spot, one of four singles from his debut studio album Get Rich or Die Tryin' to make the list (at positions 1, 14, 21, and 63).What was the #1 song of 2007? ›
Beyoncé's "Irreplaceable" was the best-performing single of the year, topping the Top Hot 100 Hits of 2007.What was the number 1 song in 2006? ›
Powter's "Bad Day" is the best-performing single this year, topping the Billboard Top Hot 100 Hits of 2006. "Hips Don't Lie" gave Shakira a number-one single credit, her first since she began her recording career in 1996. The feat made her the first Colombian recording artist to have topped the Billboard Hot 100.What is the top 10 albums ever sold? ›
- 1. “ THRILLER” by Michael Jackson. ...
- 2. “ BACK IN BLACK” by AC/DC. ...
- 3. “ THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON” by Pink Floyd. ...
- 4. “ THE BODYGUARD” ...
- 5. “ BAD” ...
- 6. “ BAT OUT OF HELL” ...
- 7. “ THEIR GREATEST HITS (1971-1975)” ...
- 8. “ COME ON OVER”
Hailed the Princess of Pop, Britney Spears is arguably the biggest star of the 2000s.What is the number 1 album in history? ›
Michael Jackson's Thriller, estimated to have sold 70 million copies worldwide, is the best-selling album. Jackson also currently has the highest number of albums on the list with five, Celine Dion has four, while the Beatles, Pink Floyd, Madonna and Whitney Houston each have three.
- 2000 – Eminem – The Way I Am [The Marshall Mathers LP] – 3,710,000.
- 2004 – Green Day – Holiday [American Idiot] – 3,710,000.
- 2000 – NSYNC – It's Gonna Be Me [No Strings Attached] – 3,680,000.
- 2006 – Red Hot Chili Peppers – Snow ((Hey Oh)) [Stadium Arcadium] – 3,600,000.
Snap rap is a rap sub-genre that popped after the year 2000.Who is the best selling hip hop artist of the 2010s? ›
Number one and by a wide margin, Kanye West lands at the top spot of most successful rappers of the 2010s. Aside from being one of the best-selling artists of the decade, West saw incredible success as a fashion designer.Who is the most influential singer of the 2010s? ›
- Taylor Swift.
- Lady Gaga.
- Ed Sheeran.
- Kanye West.
- Ariana Grande.
Some of the most successful North American pop artists of the decade include Katy Perry, Bruno Mars, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Shawn Mendes, Lady Gaga, and Justin Bieber.Who is the most influential rapper of all time? ›
Arguably, no other rapper has left a greater legacy than Tupac. The greatest contradiction in hip hop - social activist on one hand, artist at other times, violent mysogenist at others - Tupac LIVED his moto of Thug Life every single day.Who is the most iconic rapper of all time? ›
- #1 Jay-Z.
- #2 Lil Wayne.
- #3 Kanye West.
- #4 Kendrick Lamar.
- #5 Notorious B.I.G.
- #6 Tupac Shakur.
- #7 Dr. Dre.
- #8 Snoop Dogg.
Ivan Timofeyevich Dryomin (Russian: Иван Тимофеевич Дрёмин; born 8 April 1997), better known by his stage name Face, is a Russian rapper who made his debut in 2015 with his EP Cursed Stamp (Russian: Проклятая печать) and has been producing music since.Who has the biggest impact on hip-hop? ›
- Public Enemy.
- The Notorious B.I.G.
- Missy Elliott.
The top 100 most-streamed artists of 2022 is experiencing a rap takeover. Sitting at number one is Drake, who is now this year's top-streamed artist so far with at 6.7 billion in streams. After earning his eleventh No.
The top 10 rappers in 2022 include Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, Ye, Jay-Z, Travis Scott, J. Cole, Drake, Snoop Dogg, Post Malone, and Dr. Dre. These artists are known for their hit music.Who is the king of gangsta rap? ›
Of course, Dr Dre and MC Ren can be regarded as originators of the genre, but it was their counterparts, Ice Cube and Eazy-E, that really drove the point of gangsta rap home. Eazy-E is, without a doubt, the most notorious gangsta rapper of all.Who is the original king of rap? ›
As a genre, hip-hop hits the big 4-0 this September. That's when the seminal 1979 single “Rapper's Delight” celebrates its 40th anniversary.Who is the fastest rapper alive? ›
Watsky is not just one of the fastest rappers in the world. He also holds the Guinness World Record for Longest Rapping Marathon, with a record of rapping for 33 hours, 33 minutes, and 19 seconds straight.Which rapper has the most awards? ›
Most Grammys won by a rapper
Jay-Z and Kanye West, each with 24 awards, have won more Grammy Awards than any other rapper. Lauryn Hill is the most awarded female rapper, with 8 Grammy Awards.