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50 CENT, Get Rich Or Die Tryin', Shady/Aftermath
Known first for a gimmick track where he robbed all of hip-hop's royalty, then for the bidding war after his mixtape success, 50 Cent finally releases his debut under the tutelage of Dr. Dre and Eminem. And Get Rich Or Die Tryin' is at its best when touched by one of its two executive producers. "Patiently Waiting," produced by and guest-starring Eminem is a fine example. Dr. Dre mixed eight of 19 tracks but gets a production credit on just four, the best being lead single "In Da Club," which is just where you'll be hearing this cut regularly. Also noteworthy are "21 Questions" featuring Nate Dogg, "If I Can't," "P.I.M.P." and 50's dismantling of Ja Rule, "Wanksta," featured here as a bonus track. It would be hard for any album that was this highly anticipated to live up to the hype, but thanks to Dre's Midas touch, Get Rich comes close.
Click here to listen to samples or buy this album.

-- Mason Storm

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