Jadakiss says he was interested in rap from a very early age. When his parents told him to get a job and earn his own keep, Jadakiss was lured into the life of drug-dealing on the streets by friends, and his interest in rap music started there.
Jadakiss became a popular freestyler, engaging in competitions by the time he was twelve. He and some of his early friends, such as Sheek, were given the opportunity to compete in the Jack the Rapper competition in Florida, and Jadakiss did quite well, making friends with the Ruff Ryders. As a teen, he was given the opportunity to get into a recording studio, and has blossomed ever since.
Jada and his squad have been featured on many underground mix tapes, including the legendary DJ Clue. He and his friends formed the rap group the L.O.X. in 1994, which became popular in the summer of 1997 with their multi-platinum tribute to the Notorious B.I.G. called "We'll Always Love Big Poppa" (the B-side to Puff Daddy's "I'll Be Missing You"). In 1998, the Lox released Money, Power, Respect. Following this album, the Lox left Bad Boy Records after the famous 'Free the Lox' campaign. In 1999, Sheek Louch, Styles P, and Jadakiss joined with the Ruff Ryders.
Jada's debut solo album, Kiss the Game Goodbye, was released in August of 2001 under the Ruff Ryders/Interscope label. This album featured guests Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, Nas and DMX to name a few. Although it featured hits such as the Alchemist-produced "We Gon' Make It" the album failed to go platinum. During this time, Jadakiss and his D Block camp were emboiled in lyrical warfare with Beanie Sigel and the Roc-A-Fella/State Property crew. This beef apparently stemmed from an article in The Source magazine, where Jadakiss was to have allegedly stated that Philly rappers stole is style and flow (Sigel and State Property are from Philly). Numerous disses on mixtpes could be heard most notable 'Fuck Beanie' and 'Fuck Jada'. The beef was eventully squashed when both camps united in an undisclosed part of Harlem, NY.
Jadakiss released his second solo album, Kiss of Death, in June, 2004. Before the release, Kiss asked advice of his fans in the form a poll; most claimed the rapper wasn't personal enough in his lyrical stylings, and he released a single with the purpose of bearing his inner thoughts. The song, "Why?", became one of the biggest hits of that year, spawning a remix featuring Styles P, Common, Nas, and Anthony Hamilton. Jadakiss attracted some controversy (and condemnation from Bill O'Reilly, who labeled him a "smear merchant") with "Why," which features lyrics that seem to imply a link between George W. Bush and the September 11, 2001 attacks. The track, which peaked at #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in September 2004, was banned on some radio stations or played only with the lyrics in question censored.
Kiss of Death did not reflect the popularity of its lead single, and though it was better-received than his first effort, did not see excessive sales. The album was a hit with Jadakiss fans, it reveals a deeper side to the typical talk of drugs, guns, and snitches. He speaks about such current events as Arnold Schwarzenegger becoming the governor of California, Aaliyah's death, and Denzel Washington finally winning an Oscar. He also tries to give insight into events in his personal life, such as family problems and being robbed of $1,100 by fellow rapper Gucci Mane.
In 2004, Jadakiss was featured on a song by rapper Ja Rule called "New York", along with fellow New York rapper Fat Joe. Shortly after, 50 Cent - who at the time had beef with Ja Rule - began to diss both Jadakiss and Fat Joe. Jada retaliated, and the beef has expanded to include all of D-Block and G-Unit. 50 Cent mocked Jadakiss in the music video for his song "Piggy Bank", suggesting that Jadakiss resembles a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. Soon after, Jadakiss released the song "Checkmate", a song using the same beat that 50 Cent used on the song "I'm An Animal", which was originally from Mobb Deep affiliated artist Big Noyd's "Air It Out". On the track Jada clearly shows the world his lyrical talent, and imagination is above that of 50 Cent with lines such as: "you should just sell clothes and sneakers / 'cause out of your whole camp, your flow's the weakest" , "I don't got a problem with clout / you ain't get shot again yet so what's your second album about?" and "this is a true fact / since when has it become cool to get shot, and not shot back?".
50 Cent then replied with the song "I Run New York" featuring Tony Yayo. After this, Jadakiss and fellow L.O.X. member Styles P released the song "I'm Sorry Ms. Jackson", (using Outkast's original "Ms. Jackson" beat) which is a play on 50 Cent50 Cent's real name, Curtis Jackson. Jadakiss has also made mention of 50 Cent in subsequent songs, and it was rumored that fellow G-Unit member, Lloyd Banks, was to release the diss song "Death Wish" on his second album "Rotten Apple", but the album was released without the track, and it has never surfaced. After a year or so since the feud between 50 Cent and Jadakiss began, it is still continuing. Jadakiss's Beef with 50 Cent is also mentioned on the diss song "MC Burial" (Don't Body Ya'self) by veteran rapper Nas, with Nas rapping: "Jada defeated him, Joe to street for him, whats next? i guess its for Nas to ether him".
In 2005, Jadakiss appeared on Punk'd after being tricked by Ashton Kutcher's crew members on his way home. Jadakiss had to get involved with two women for blocking the traffic, and a taxi driver. In July of 2005, Jadakiss and fellow D-Block member Styles recorded 'Problem Child', a dis toward rival 50 Cent.
On April 6, 2006, a song called "Shots Fired" which was originally meant for release on Time is Money was leaked on to the internet. The song features Jadakiss and Styles P rapping back and forth and is a diss song against 50 Cent and G-Unit. It is rumored that the song will not be featured on Time is Money because of the attacks on Interscope labelmates G-Unit. There have been many of hip-hop legends that have voiced their opinion on this beef. Many feel that lyrically 50 Cent is no match for Kiss. As one rapper quoted "bar for bar Kiss may be the best rapper in the game period".
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