Happy Birthday, Memphis Bleek!
The TIDAL B-Sides concert from last month proved many things. For one, Jay Z has the most fire, wide-ranging catalogue in hip-hop history. Also, Roc-A-Fella Records really is forever as Hov temporarily reunited the collective at the concert. One of Roc-A-Fella's soldiers, Memphis Bleek, turns 37 years old today (June 23).
If the early years of last decade marked the point when Jay Z made the conscious effort to move away from street hustling to legitimate entrepreneur, Memphis Bleek and the rest of the Roc-A-Fella crew were the force that kept his persona tethered to the hood.
After appearing on the Reasonable Doubt track "Coming of Age," Bleek became a reliable guests on a few of Hov's fan-favorite tunes, including "Is That Yo Chick" and "It's Alright."
Memphis Bleek, whose real name is Malik Cox, had a respectable solo career, too — all four of his albums went gold. However, his career was only just that: respectable. Bleek never blew up to become a star.
But as Jay Z once rapped on "Diamonds from Sierra Leone (Remix)," he states that Bleek is his partner-in-rhyme for life. He raps, "Bleek could be one hit away his whole career / As long as I'm alive he's a millionaire / And even if I die he's in my will somewhere / So he could just kick back and chill somewhere / Oh yeah, he don't even have to write rhymes."
And Bleek is doing fine. He married his longtime girlfriend Ashley Coombs last December with Jay Z in attendance. Roc la familia for life!
Watch Memphis Bleek's "Round Here" (Video) [Feat. T.I. & Trick Daddy]