Happy 20th anniversary to Black Rob and his debut album “Life Story.” The album was praised for its production and Rob’s lyricism. Life Story debuted at number 3 on the Billboard 200 and spawned three singles: “Whoa!,” “You Don’t Know Me” and “Espacio”. The album was certified platinum by the RIAA for selling over 1,000,000 copies in the United States. The LP sold close to 178,000 copies in its first week released.
Life Story received positive reviews from music critics for the production and Rob’s lyrical ability. Many thought Black Rob had helped Puff Daddy regain the street credibility lost when Puff went mainstream. Others felt like Black Rob was able to construct graphic autobiographical lyrics without breaking a sweat. Some compared him to late, great, Notorious B.I.G. with his smooth and reserved flow while being able to depict explicit tales.
Black Rob grew up in Harlem and was inspired by artist like Spoonie Gee, Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh. He started rapping at an early age but was twenty two when he first joined Schizophrenics. They were a rap group but they did not release an album. He got his first shot with the Bad Boy in 1997, making an appearance on the Bad Boy remix to 112’s “Come See Me”. He was then featured on several Bad Boy releases, including remixes to Total’s “What About Us” and the song “24 Hrs. to Live” by Ma$e.
Rob would go on to do over ten features creating a buzz for himself. Then in early 2000 he released his single “Whoa”, produced by Buckwild, and it became an instant hit. The song would go on to reach top ten on both the hip hop and R&B Billboard charts. “Whoa” catapulted the album “Life Story” to platinum status. His second single Espacio featured Lil Kim and G-Dep while his third single was “You Don’t Know Me” featuring Joe Hooker.
Salute Black Rob in the 20th Anniversary of “Life Story,” Check out the album below