TRUE Athletes That Tried to Rap – Shaquille O’ Neal
Out of all the athletes that have attempted to make it in the rap game, Shaquille O’Neal was the most successful. He started his rap career in 1993 after signing with Jive Records and was able to work with many big-name artists. His debut album, Shaq Diesel, received a platinum certification from the RIAA. The singles “What’s Up Doc? (Can We Rock)” and “(I Know I Got) Skillz” were certified Gold as well.
While Shaq wasn’t the most critically acclaimed rapper, he definitely had some talent. Whether people took him seriously as a rapper or not, audiences were curious to see what he could bring to the table. Most impressively, Shaq was featured on Michael Jackson’s HIStory album in 1995 on the song “2 Bad”:
In a 2016 interview with Complex, Shaq reflected on his rap career stating, “What people don’t understand about my music is that I wasn’t trying to be a rapper. Quite honestly, rappers don’t make as much money anyway. My thing was being in the booth, spitting my verse, and then Jay Z or Biggie looking over saying, ‘Oh shit, you wrote that?’” Shaq has sold over 1 million albums worldwide with a total of 4 studio albums and 1 compilation album.