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Hip Hop Culture: Remember When 106 & Park Ruled The Early 2000’s?

In 2003, Jay-Z caused a media frenzy when he announced his retirement on 106 & Park.

106 & Park
Landmarkmedia, Shutterstock

Hip Hop legend Juvenile once said, “Cash Money Records taking over for the 99’ and the 2000s!” No pun intended, but that’s exactly what 106 & Park did! Thanks to BET’s former television executive and creator Stephen Hill, 106 & Park took over the early 2000’s the day it premiered.

106 & Park (Episode One)

On Sept. 11, 2000, 106 & Park premiered on millions of television screens in the black community, changing Hip Hop culture forever! In the first episode, beloved hosts Free and AJ introduced us to their famous “Top 10 Videos” countdown segment.

Credit: Twitter

Look at your calendar. It says September 2022, doesn’t it? After watching the ten videos below, you will feel like you’re in September 2000, watching Free and AJ present the ‘Top 10 Videos of the Summer’ for the first time.

#10: Dr. Dre ‘The Next Episode’

Dr. Dre ft. Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, and Nate Dogg’s ‘The Next Episode’ music video was released in June 2000. Since its re-release in 2009, it has garnered 500 million views.

Credit: YouTube

#9: Ideal ‘Whatever’

Ideal’s “Whatever” music video gives us a glimpse of summer life in the early 2000s. It has gained 620K views since its 2012 re-release.

Credit: YouTube

#8: Lil’ Kim ‘No Matter What They Say

This adult fantasy video starring Mary J. Blidge and Carmen Electra gained 11 million views since its re-release in 2009.

Credit: YouTube

#7: Common ‘The Light’

Known for his soulful style, Commons’ eccentric music video has gained 11 million views since its re-release in 2016.

Credit: YouTube

#6: Lucy Pearl ‘Dance Tonight

This club anthem dance hall music video has garnered 3 million views since its re-release in 2012.

Credit: YouTube

#5: Carl Thomas ‘I Wish’

Directed by Marcus Raboy, Thomas’s ‘I Wish’ music video has gained 15 million views since its re-release in 2016.

Credit: YouTube

#4: Mystikal ‘Shake It Fast’

A certified summer hit! Since its re-release in 2009 ‘Shake It Fast’ music video has garnered 24 million views. 

Credit: YouTube

#3: Jagged Edge ‘Let’s Get Married

R&B trio Jagged Edge created a classic wedding anthem. ‘Let’s Get Married’ music video has gained 31 million views since its re-release in 2013.

Credit: YouTube

#2: Jay-Z ‘Big Pimpin’

Who can forget the million-dollar Yacht, money, champagne, cigars, and women in this music video?! Jay-Z ft. UGK’s ‘Big Pimpin’ music video gives you a glimpse of the luxurious life of a SUCCESSFUL rapper! Since its re-release in 2010, ‘Big Pimpin’ has garnered 56 million views.

Credit: YouTube

#1: Nelly ‘Country Grammar

Rap Superstar Nelly dominated the early 2000s nonstop, hit after hit! ‘Country Grammar’ has gained 86 million views since its 2009 re-release.

Credit: YouTube

Because it influenced Hip Hop, 106 & Park’s ‘Top 10 Video’ countdown segment became the most anticipated feature on the show. In addition, various music artists who had a top ten video on 106 & Park, such as Chris Brown and Aaliyah, would make guest appearances and perform their hit songs. 106 & Park had numerous hosts throughout its twelve seasons, but none can compare to Free and AJ.

Credit: Twitter

Early 2000’s Highlights

Lil’ Kim (2000)

Credit: Lil’ Kim, Spotify

In 2000, fashion icon Lil’ Kim made her first guest appearance on 106 & Park to promote her new album “The Notorious K.I.M.” Throughout the twelve seasons, Lil’ Kim made numerous appearances.

Even though Lil’ Kim was a host for 106 & Park and performed many of her classic hits. She’s best known for her early 2000s glamour and style.

Credit: YouTube

Aaliyah (2001)

106 & Park
Credit: Aaliyah, Spotify

On Aug. 21, 2001, Aaliyah made her first guest appearance on 106 & Park. This was her final interview before her tragic death four days later. During her interview, Aaliyah discussed her new self-titled album ‘Aaliyah,’ and the filming process for her role as Akasha in “Queen of the Damned.”

In addition, she announced the winner of her  ‘Get Paid in the Escalade’ contest giveaway. 

@throwbackcentral2000s

This 106 & Park era was different 2000sthrowback throwbackshows 106andpark Aaliyah fyp fypシ foryoupage

♬ Rock The Boat – Aaliyah
Credit: TikTok
Credit: YouTube

Jay- Z (2003)

Credit: JAY-Z, Spotify

On Nov.14, 2003, Jay-Z caused a media frenzy when he announced his retirement on 106 & Park. During the interview, he discussed why “The Black Album” would be his last album, his “Roc The Mic” tour, and introduced the world to his new group, “Young Gunz.” As of 2022, Jay- Z net worth is 1.3 billion.

In addition to this milestone, he has won 23 Grammys since his retirement announcement in 03’! Good thing he didn’t retire, right?!

Credit: YouTube

Chris Brown (2006)

Credit: Chris Brown, Spotify

On Dec. 18, 2006, Chris Brown made his first guest appearance on 106 & Park! By this time, 106 & Park has gone through a transition. Julissa and Big Tigger were now the hosts of the star-studded show! During the interview, Brown got very candid.

Looking back, it’s evident that he was born to be a star! Every time he breathed, the girls in the crowd screamed!

Credit: YouTube
Credit: TikTok

Freestyle Friday

Credit: BET, 106 & Park

We’ve talked about the video countdown segment and guest appearances, but we can’t forget the Friday main event! Remember rushing home from school and work every Friday to see the rap battles on 106 & Park?! Writing a rhyme on paper is fantastic. Writing material that’ll wow an audience requires creative skills and talent!

However, having the ability to pull words out of thin air in a rap battle is impressive and entirely supernatural! True Hip Hop fans know rap is a musical sport, and rap battles are very competitive, which is why it’s highly entertaining and exciting to witness individuals express themselves without a pen and paper.

Credit: TikTok
Credit: Twitter

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Graduate student at Liberty University, Master of Arts' in Mass Communication.

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