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— By Malikka McDuffie

JAY-Z is — without a doubt — one of the greatest rappers of all time. With a career stretching over more than 20 years, the music mogul has not only made his mark in music, but has etched himself in history as hip hop’s first self-made billionaire.

Arguably one of the only rappers from his generation who is still on top, JAY-Z has continued to maintain his image within the growing music scene. With a catalog comprised of 13 studio-recorded albums, two live albums, five complication albums, one soundtrack, and five compilation albums, the rapper born Sean Carter has amassed over 20 Billboard chart-topping hits.

Here are nine of the rapper’s biggest hit singles that made the top 10 on The Hot 100 charts.

1. “Izzo (H.O.V.A.)”

Peaking at the No. 8 spot on the Billboard charts in October 2001, “Izzo (H.O.V.A.)” was a certified anthem. No, literally, JAY claims it to be in the song’s lyrics: “That’s the anthem, get your damn hands up!” Filled with success and achievement, “Izzo” is one of the emcee’s most popular songs to date. The single was the first release from Hov’s sixth studio album, The Blueprint, which later awarded him his first top 10 single as a solo artist.

2. “03 Bonnie & Clyde”

This was the single that foreshadowed a long list of hits. As the public announcement commemorated their relationship, The Carters first shared their love with the world in their 2002 hit single, “03 Bonnie & Clyde.” JAY-Z’s famous line, “You ready B? Let’s go get ’em,” has been featured in a number of collaborative singles between the dominating couple. The track was recorded and featured on the rapper’s seventh studio album, The Blueprint 2: The Gift & The Curse, released in 2002. Certified gold, “03 Bonnie and Clyde” peaked at No. 4 in December 2002.

3. “Excuse Me Miss”

Peaking at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts, the Pharrell Williams-featured track peaked at number eight on April 12, 2013. “Excuse Me Miss” was a bonafide radio-hit single, which also granted the talented duo the number one spot on Billboard’s R&B charts. The single from The Blueprint 2: The Gift & the Curse album was nominated for Best Rap Songwriting at the 46th Grammy Awards.

4. “Change Clothes”

Another Pharrell collaboration, The Neptunes produced record reached the No. 10 spot on the Hot 100 in December 2003, finding its way on to JAY-Z’s last album before retirement, The Black Album. The track led the album’s success as its first single. The rapper later admitted that his premature departure was indeed “the worst retirement in history.”

5. “Dirt Off Your Shoulder”

Lifted from The Black Album, “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” became the sounding board of 2004. An infused combination of rock and hip hop, the single features parts of Linkin Park’s “Lying from You.” It was initially featured on the joint album between the two, Collision Course. Produced and collaboratively written by Timbaland, “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” peaked at No. 5, making it JAY-Z’s third highest peak on the charts.

6. “Run This Town”

Mention this song title and you can instantly hear the claps, rumbling, and Rihanna’s vocals ringing in your ears. The Kanye West and Ernest Wilson-produced track was the second single lifted from the emcee’s 11th studio-recorded album, The Blueprint 3. “Run This Town” won Best Rap Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards before peaking at No. 2 on the charts in 2009.

7. “Forever Young”

Featuring the rich voice of Mr. Hudson, “Forever Young” slowly climbed to the top after its September 2009 release. Jumping from No. 75 in its debut week to peaking at No. 10 in May 2010, “Young Forever” continues to resonate with fans worldwide. The song has since been rearranged for live performances with Hudson’s parts being sung by Beyoncé during the couple’s world-renowned “On The Run Tour” series.

8. “Empire State of Mind”

Debuting in October 2009, “Empire State of Mind” quickly caught fire and became the theme song of New York City. The Blueprint 3 lead single was a story of motivation and held vocal melodies sang by Alicia Keys. Nominated for three Grammys at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards, the track took home trophies for Best Rap Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. The single peaked at No. 1 after residing there for five consecutive weeks in November 2009.

9. “Ni–as in Paris”

The Kanye West collaborated single was released on September 13, 2011. Featured on their widely successful joint album Watch The Throne, “Ni–as in Paris” has lived on to be a fan favorite. The album recently celebrated its eight-year anniversary on August 8th. The track samples “Baptizing Scene” by Reverend W.A. Donaldson, “Victory” by Puff Daddy featuring The Notorious B.I.G. and Busta Rhymes. The track peaked in the No. 5 spot on the hot 100 charts in January 2012.

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