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Curtis James Jackson, out of South Jamaica in the Queens borough of New York City, is the archetypal rap superstar. Born into straitened circumstances he has used his innate street craft and not inconsiderable musical artistry to turn adversity to his advantage. His is a classic rags to riches tale – best summed up in his own words on the album and movie Get Rich Or Die Tryin’.

That dictum is virtually the metaphor for his career since he’s survived attempts on his life, a hideously dysfunctional upbringing and emerged as the man who has sold over 30 million albums, won a Grammy and 13 Billboard Music Awards (his mantel groans with sundry others), instigated his own G–Unit outlet and established himself as an entrepreneur. He is definitely hip hop royalty. If Eminem is the King and Nelly the Crown Prince then 50 Cent is the Young Pretender. Not only that he is now viewed as a great role model while his albums are eagerly awaited and fly off the shelves. His latest disc is Animal Ambition and a follow-up, Street King Immortal, will soon be available. In a sense his albums go viral, one feeding off the next and so on. He writes and raps about ambition, prosperity and hardship with equal facility and zeal. It’s easy to load him down with superlatives, since he exists in that rarefied stratosphere of the super successful, but in a world of flash and flim-flam he is the real deal and lets his music do the talking.

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Get Rich Or Die Tryin
50 Cent - Get Rich Or Die Tryin
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The Massacre
50 Cent - The Massacre
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Curtis
50 Cent - Curtis
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Before I Self-Destruct
50 Cent - Before I Self-Destruct
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Beg For Mercy
G-Unit - Beg For Mercy
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Get Rich Or Die Tryin
Various Artists - Get Rich Or Die Tryin
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