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There is a symphony of sounds that capture New York City in 1997. However, the true soundtrack for the city was blaring from car radios, bodegas, and the famed Tunnel on 27th Street. There was a new voice of the city, and the narrator was Mason Betha. Not many artists, if ever, had it the way MA$E had it in 1997.
MA$E started off his rap career alongside fellow Harlemites, Big L and Herb McGruff, as part of Children Of The Corn. MA$E leveraged the reputation he built through street-inspired raps and battles to rap for the founder of Bad Boy Records, Puff Daddy. Instantly grabbing Puff’s attention, MA$E seized the opportunity and joined the ranks of Bad Boy Records trading in his street rapping, skully hat and army jacket rocking aesthetic for a more mainstream glossier look.
Leading the charge of Bad Boy’s post-Biggie breakout, MA$E strung together a series of hits in ‘97 that propelled his personal career and rocketed the entire look and feel of hip-hop into another dimension.
From the first time his instantly recognizable smile appeared on TV, as he bopped through Times Square in 112’s ‘Only You’ video, on through his deep collection of smash hits that encapsulate the shiny suit era of big budget videos, MA$E single-handedly defined the essence of today’s modern day rap star.
Whether you know him as Mason Betha, Murda Mase or Pastor Mase.
We all know him as MA$E. From New York to the World.