Name: Sean "Diddy"Combs
Profession: Singer, Actor, Producer, Director
Birth Date: November 4, 1969
Height: 5' 11"
Sean "Diddy" Combs was born in Harlem but spent much of his childhood in nearby Mt. Vernon, N.Y. When Combs was three, his father was shot to death, but he would pick up business early on thanks to his successful paper routes.
After completing his private secondary education at Mount Saint Michael Academy in 1987, Combs enrolled at Howard University in Washington, D.C. It was then that he convinced his childhood friend, Heavy D, to sign him up as an intern at his label — Uptown Records. Combs would eventually drop out of college as he made a name for himself at the label, helping to develop the likes of Father MC and Mary J. Blige. Perhaps becoming too much of a star in his own right, Combs was soon fired from the label.
Following his exit, Combs went on to establish Bad Boy Records in 1993. He would go on to sign his first two artists — former EPMD roadie Craig Mack and the Notorious B.I.G. By the following year, Mack was striking gold with a remix of his "Flava in Ya Ear" single, which featured LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes, Rampage, and the Notorious B.I.G.. The track hit the top 10 and became the first platinum record for the new label. The Notorious B.I.G. soon followed with his own hit single, as "Big Poppa" also reached the top 10. Mack's album, "Project: Funk da World," would eventually go gold while Biggie’s "Ready to Die" became certified double platinum.
With momentum building, Combs went about signing new acts, including Faith Evans, Total, 112 and Mase. He also kept a busy schedule producing artists outside of the label, including Mariah Carey, Lil' Kim, TLC, Boyz II Men, SWV and Aretha Franklin. A rivalry would soon develop with the West Coast's Death Row Records. Combs and B.I.G. became embroiled in a feud with Death Row's head, Suge Knight, and the label's star artist, Tupac Shakur. Shakur, who believed Combs was involved in his 1994 shooting, threatened Combs and B.I.G in the lyrics to his hit song "Hit 'Em Up." He also mocked B.I.G. by saying he had slept with Evans, who was his wife. In 1996, Shakur was shot and killed by unknown assailants. B.I.G. would be killed in a similar manner just six months later.
After taking a break, Combs made his solo debut in the mid-1997 with the track "Can't Nobody Hold Me Down." The single was an immediate success and stayed at the top of the charts for nearly two months. His tribute single to B.I.G., "I'll Be Missing You," quickly followed and became another monster hit. The songs helped his album, "No Way Out," go certified platinum several times over. It won Best Rap Album honors at the 1998 Grammy Awards, while "I'll Be Missing You" won for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group.
Having firmly established himself as one of the top names in the music industry, Combs would start to branch out as an actor, clothing designer and full-fledged entrepreneur.