Dan Charnas began his career in the mailroom of seminal rap label Profile Records, home to Run-DMC. He wrote some of the first cover stories for The Source, and eventually went on to become the VP of Hip-Hop A&R for Rick Rubin’s Def American Recordings. Over time, Charnas collected stories of the rap industry that few fans and outsiders knew. After a decade working in the music business and another four years of painstaking reporting and research, Charnas has created the first-ever definitive re-telling of the creation and growth of the industry, The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop. Culled from over 300 interviews, The Big Payback spans 40 years, from 1968 to 2008. In this exclusive for Complex, Charnas distills some of the book’s essence into a master list of The 25 Biggest Business Power Moves in Hip-Hop History.

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