Nearly 25 years into a run that's seen some of the biggest moments in hip hop history, these 25 tracks show Bad Boy Records' versatility as a powerhouse label.
The role that Bad Boy Records played in '90s hip hop can't be overstated. From the emergence of the legendary Notorious B.I.G., to a genre-rattling beef with Death Row, to ushering in the much-maligned shiny suit era - Bad Boy was everywhere. As the vision of Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, Bad Boy had a roster positioning them as a titan in the music industry: B.I.G., Ma$e, The Lox, Faith Evans, Shyne, and many more, were a formidable team that loomed large on the rap landscape.
When the '90s ended and the jiggy era largely went with it, Bad Boy stayed relevant through reinvention. From the advent of Bad Boy South, with signees like Yung Joc and 8Ball & MJG, to the debut album of r&b siren Cassie, the label continued to crank out hits. Even up to today, with French Montana and Janelle Monáe, the label remains near the musical zeitgeist.
Bad Boy's influence is undeniable, even in regards to what seemed clownish at the time. Putting a producer in the forefront of your videos was roundly mocked - famously so by Suge Knight - but it's a concept that artists like Pharrell ran with, and now it's a common occurrence. With Diddy as chief architect, Bad Boy sculpted an attitude, and beyond the radio hits and glossy visuals, there's an irreverence and flamboyance that's worn by his disciples to this day.
With a sprawling catalog that's adorned with classics, Bad Boy has had a run without many peers. These are the top 25 tracks in the label's diverse, consequential, and ongoing history.