Previously a street hustler and now a respectable multi-media business mogul, Jay-Z has enjoyed a rags-to-riches rise to fame and become arguably the most important hip-hop artist of all time. Born in Brooklyn, 1969, as Shawn Corey Carter, he attended the same high school as Busta Rhymes and The Notorious B.I.G., but failed to graduate, focusing his attention on the streets of his hometown where he gained a name for himself as a rapper under the moniker Jay-Z. Initially a hype man for Big Daddy Kane, he then founded his own Roc-A-Fella Records label with Damon Dash and Kareem Biggs. Carter released his debut album, Reasonable Doubt, in 1996. A year later he teamed up with Puff Daddy for In My Lifetime, Vol. 1 before scoring his breakthrough hit with the Annie-sampling title track from 1998’s Vol. 2…Hard Knock Life, whilst also selling out Jay-Z tickets for his first North American tour. After being sentenced to three years’ probation for his involvement in the stabbing of a record company executive, Carter gave Kanye West and The Neptunes their first mainstream exposure on 2000’s The Dynasty: Roc La Familia and began a long-standing feud with Nas. In 2001, Jay-Z released arguably his most celebrated work, The Blueprint, and a year later, its sequel, The Gift & The Curse, saw him team up with future wife Beyonce for the first time on “’03 Bonnie & Clyde.” 2003’s The Black Album spawned his signature hit, “99 Problems,” and in between two joint albums with R. Kelly, Jay-Z tickets sold out immediately for a special gig at Madison Square Garden. In 2004, he recorded a mash-up E.P. with Linkin Park and became the President of the Def Jam label, whilst a year later, he surprisingly buried the hatchet with Nas when the pair performed together at the “I Declare War Concert”. 2006’s Kingdom Come achieved the highest first week sales of his career and following 2007’s ,American Gangster inspired by the film of the same name, he defied his critics, including Oasis’ Noel Gallagher, with a triumphant headline set at Glastonbury. In 2009, Carter signed a major deal with Live Nation, released The Blueprint 3 and scored a UK number one with “Run This Town,” whilst a year later he embarked on a joint tour with Eminem, supported U2 and hooked up with Kanye West for the Watch The Throne project. In 2012, Jay-Z tickets went on sale for a world tour, including eight dates at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, the new home of the Brooklyn Nets basketball team he partially owns.