In December of 1997, the song that launched the biggest pre-Ether battle war was released. 4,3,2,1 is most notable for the beef between the 2-decade enduring legend LL and the up-and-coming lava spitter, Canibus. Making guest appearances were the dynamic duo of rap, Redman and Method Man. The song had no choice but to be a banger peaking at number 10. Despite the LL, Bis beef, the Method and Red magic, the show-stealer was the gravelly-voiced MC “Stay out the dark, ’cause if I catch you when the sun is down, Run it clown, come up off that, or I’m gon’ gun it down”. This was my first exposure to the staccato halting, yet rapid mercurial flow that DMX would transform into a catalog of legend.
DMX went on a run that likely never happens again. From 1998 to 2003 X dropped 5 albums, each debuted at Number One on the Billboard 100 and US R&B charts, each went platinum. Album 6 debuted at number 2 on the Billboard 100 and Number 1 on US R&B charts. Classic after Classic
In addition to entrenching himself as an era-defining rap artist, he was integral to the reemergence of black film starring in Romeo Must Die and Belly.
Just this summer DMX blessed us with a versus against his contemporary the legendary Snoop Dog
Gone too soon,
REST IN POWER X