Bronx-born beatmaker Kasseem Dean got his start in the music business selling mixtapes at a local barber shop. By age 16 he was producing for his uncles Dee and Wah Dean and his aunt Chivon Dean, who were launching the Ruff Ryders label. After producing DMX's "Ruff Ryders' Anthem," Swizz retired from haircutting for good and went on to produce smashes for Jay-Z, Busta Rhymes, and Kanye West, moving over a quarter of a billion
records to date. Since the release of his 2008 album, One Man, One Band
, Swizz has put more emphasis on performance, dropping simple, catchy rhymes on Drake’s “Fancy” and Jay-Z’s Grammy-winning “On To The Next One” from The Blueprint III.
Perhaps his proudest production credit to date is the earthquake relief project "Haiti Mon Amour" featuring Jay-Z, Bono, and Rihanna, which propelled the Hope For Haiti album to the top of Billboard
's album charts—the first digital album ever to do so. An accomplished painter, art collector, and car enthusiast, Swizz married Grammy-winning singer Alicia Keys in 2010, and they now have a son together, his second.