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Timbaland
Hip-Hop


Timbaland ascended to the top of the rap industry in the late '90s, remarkably balancing his in-demand hitmaking abilities with his outlandish production style. Few rap producers were capable of such a balance between commerce and craft. Timbaland produced an endless list of hits, primarily for a select group of affiliates (Missy Elliott, Aaliyah, Jay-Z, Ginuwine) though also for a number of other A-list artists (Ludacris, Snoop Dogg, Nas, Justin Timberlake). Yet even so, he always infused a remarkable sense of individuality and creativity into his productions. When you hear a Timbaland production there is no mistaking it for anyone else's work: stuttering bass-heavy bounce beats offset resounding high-end synth stabs, all of this often complemented by his own signature-like quiet murmuring beneath the track; and no sampling. In the late '90s, when Timbaland was still relatively new on the scene, the Virginia native worked extensively with Missy ("The Rain"), Aaliyah ("If Your Girl Only Knew"), and Ginuwine ("Pony"). Later, once he'd established himself with these three, he began working with the top rappers in the industry, namely Jay-Z ("Big Pimpin'"), Nas ("You Won't See Me Tonight"), Snoop Dogg ("Snoop Dogg [What's My Name, Pt. 2]"), and Ludacris ("Rollout [My Business]"). He also worked occasionally with lesser-known regional artists such as Petey Pablo ("Raise Up"), Pastor Troy ("Are We Cuttin'"), and Tweet ("Oops (Oh My)"). As a result of his exceptional success as a producer, Timbaland eventually established his own record label, Beat Club, and began unveiling his own stable of artists (Bubba Sparxxx, Ms. Jade). Jason Birchmeier

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