Producer: Brian "All Day" Miller
Label: Roc-A-Fella, Def Jam
Prior to 2003, Kanye’s rapping ability was a mystery to most. Even if you lived in Chicago, you probably missed his mixtapes unless you frequented spots like Fletchers, Track One Records or Tony’s Sports. But even in the infancy of Yeezy’s rapping career, you knew his main goal was to make the Middle West blow like the Middle East.
“Peace” was a favorite amongst in-the-know Kanye Stans, but the outside world didn’t get a chance to enjoy the record until The College Dropout dropped and popped, and all of the early Kanye material began trickling out on mixtapes. But even early on Yeezy showed signs of genius, with hilarious lines like “Aba-cadabra’d my Nissan to a car throwing a peace sign. Peace!” How the labels weren’t knocking down his door for a deal remains one of the world’s greatest unsolved mysteries. Many of the lines on “Peace” would be repurposed for songs Yeezy used later in his career, but as you can tell, he was nice from the very beginning.