Born of African American and Puerto Rican descent, N.O.R.E. (born Victor Santiago, Jr) initially gained fame in 1996 when he went by the stage name Noreaga as part of the duo Capone-N-Noreaga. Signed to Penalty Records, the duo released their debut album The War Report in 1997 and were critically hailed for staying true to New York City’s boom bad beat style. After Capone was sentenced to jail time, N.O.R.E. released his own LPs. His album N.O.R.E., released in 1998, went gold off the Neptunes-produced hit “Superthug.” In fact, it was his work with the Virginia Beach-based production team that would produce his best-known singles, “Oh No” and “Nuthin.” N.O.R.E.  has also been able to parlay his humorously thuggish personality into acting roles in films like Paid in Full and State Property.

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