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50 Cent: The rapper Curtis James Jackson III said that in the same way 50 cents is given in change, his stagename is a metaphor for "change". He took it from Kelvin Martin, a 1980s Brooklyn robber known as 50 Cent. He said in an interview: "I'm the same kind of person 50 Cent was. I provide for myself by any means." Two Five.
50 Cent (1975-...) is a popular American rap artist and actor. He became famous for his violent personal life as well as his music. The lyrics of his songs are known for their profanity, references to sexual behavior, and expressions of violence.
50 Cent was born on July 6, 1975, in the South Jamaica neighborhood of Queens in New York City. His real name is Curtis James Jackson III. He took the stage name 50 Cent as a tribute to a slain New York City criminal known by that nickname. Curtis grew up without a father. His mother was a drug dealer. She was murdered when Curtis was 8 years old. He then went to live with his grandparents. As a youth, he was arrested and jailed several times for possessing illegal drugs.
50 Cent made his recording debut in 1998 on the song "React" by the rap group Onyx. In 1999, he recorded the single "How to Rob." In the song, he comically attacked famous rappers, leading to feuds with several of them. At the time, 50 Cent was under contract with the recording company Columbia Records. Largely because of 50 Cent's feuds with other rappers, Columbia decided not to release his album Power of the Dollar. "How to Rob" was supposed to be on the album. In 2000, 50 Cent was shot several times by an attacker. Shortly afterward, Columbia canceled its contract with him.
50 Cent began releasing his own mixtapes (taped collections of songs) recorded during his performances at clubs. In 2002, he recorded the song "Wanksta" for the soundtrack of the motion picture 8 Mile (2002). His first album, Get Rich or Die Tryin' (2003), became an immediate best seller. The album contained four hit singles, "In Da Club," "21 Questions," "P.I.M.P.," and "If I Can't." 50 Cent's other albums, The Massacre (2005) and Curtis (2007), were also popular. The album Before I Self Destruct was released in 2009.
50 Cent made his acting debut in the autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin' (2005). His other movies include the war film Home of the Brave (2006) and the crime drama Righteous Kill (2008). He wrote an autobiography, From Pieces to Weight: Once Upon a Time in Southside Queens (2004), and an illustrated memoir, 50 X 50 (with Noah Callahan-Bever, 2007).
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