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Big Daddy Kane

Big Daddy Kane is a rapper from Brooklyn, New York. He grew up in the notorious Bed-Stuy section of Brooklyn. During his career, he has worked with artists including Biz Markie, Marley Marl, Teddy Riley, Rudy Ray Moore and Barry White. Heavily influenced by Grandmaster Caz in his earlier years, he continued to improve his fast flow and freestyle battle techniques. Part of Marley Marl's legendary Juice Crew, he also penned lyrics for fellow members Biz Markie and Roxanne Shante. Kane was responsible for jump-starting and being the archtype for the career of Jay-Z, now a hugely commercially successful rapper who got his start as Kane's hypeman.

Kane is known for his incredible ability to syncopate over faster hip-hop beats, despite his asthmatic condition (he is acknowledged as one of the pioneering masters of fast-rap.) His sense of style is renowned and set a number of early-1990s hip-hop trends (high-top fades, cuts in the right eyebrow and four-finger rings). Widely regarded as one of the greatest rappers during the golden age of hip hop (1986-1994), Kane's experimentation with R&B beats and his alignment to the Five Percent faction drew criticism. Later albums, such as Looks Like a Job For..., were acclaimed, but he was never able to return to the commercial and artistic success of It's a Big Daddy Thing. However, he still tours extensively.

In 1996, before the murder of 2Pac, it was said that 2Pac intended to start his own label, Makaveli Records, featuring prominently East Coast acts; one of the artists he intended to sign was Kane, and the two even recorded a song together before the rapper's death, entitled Wherever U Are.

Big Daddy Kane has posed for Playgirl and Madonna's Sex book. As an actor, he debuted in Mario Van Peebles' western, Posse.


The backronym King Asiatic Nobody's Equal is often applied to his moniker. His name Kane came from Kane from the popular TV show Kung Fu. The Big Daddy came from Vincent Price's character in an old Frankie Avalon movie, Beach Party.

Recent Activities

Recently (especially as of 2002), a rejuvenated Big Daddy Kane has occasionally been visible collaborating with alternative hip-hop artists, including Jurassic 5, Little Brother, and DJ Babu of the Beat Junkies. He has released two singles, the Alchemist-produced The Man, The Icon, and the DJ Premier-laced Any Type of Way (on which he discusses urban collapse in post-9/11 New York City ("Giuliani got the streets lookin' like Osama starred") and the erosion of the middle class.) His most recent guest appearance was on trip-hop group Morcheeba's 2003 single What's Your Name. He has not stated any interest in working on another solo album.

In 2005, Big Daddy Kane was honored during the VH1 Hip-Hop Honors. After a medley of hits performed by T.I., Black Thought, and Common, he came out to perform his beloved track Warm It Up, Kane with his old dancers, Scoob and Scrap. The performance was tremendously well-received. Most recently, he appeared alongside the Wu-Tang Clan, Rakim, and his longtime friends Busta Rhymes and Q-Tip in a segment of the 2006 Summer Jam concert (June 7, 2006), as part of an initiative by Busta Rhymes to honor the legacy of New York City hip-hop.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2006.

Big Daddy Kane Facts

Birth NameAntonio Hardy
OccupationMusician, Actor
BirthdaySeptember 10, 1968 (55)
BirthplaceBrooklyn, New York, USA

Selected Filmography

Movie Madness
Just Another Day
Dead Heist
Hip-Hop Nation Volume 1
Love for Sale
Hip Hop Nation Volume 2
Fresh Dressed
Big Daddy Dawson's Coming
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