Hip-hop heads, did you know that A Tribe Called Quest’s fourth album, Beats, Rhymes and Life, is the group’s only album to top the charts?
After dropping three undisputed classics – People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, The Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders – between 1990 and 1993, Tribe followed up in 1996 with Beats, Rhymes and Life which marked a radical departure from their earlier work.
The album was the first project to feature production work from the Ummah, a production group which consisted of Q-Tip, Ali Shaheed Muhammad and up-and-coming Detroit beatmaker J Dilla.
Beats, Rhymes and Life also featured Queens rapper Consequence, who was Q-Tip’s cousin, heavily on the verses – he appeared on seven of the album’s 15 tracks, including the single “Stressed Out.”
Released on July 30th, Beats, Rhymes and Life topped the Billboard 200 and R&B/
Hip Hop Albums charts, making it Tribe’s first number one album.
It was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album the following year and the album’s lead single “1nce Again” was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group.