To most, rapper Young Buck was a fresh face when he became a member of 50 Cent's crew G-Unit, but he spent a long time waiting on the bench before that. The Nashville, TN, native started rapping at 12 and was in a recording studio by 14, the same age he was when he began peddling narcotics. Cash Money's main man, Brian "Baby" Williams, caught a 16-year-old Young Buck at a rap battle and soon the rapper was out of high school and in New Orleans, crowded into a small apartment with the rest of the Cash Money crew. Dedicated heart and soul to the crew, Buck "secured" the expensive cars for Juvenile's 1999 "Ha" video and spent the next four years working behind the scenes. It was too long for him not to get his own shot at stardom, so Buck left Cash Money and headed home. Back peddling and pushing, Buck paid the price when his door was kicked in by one man, guns blazing. He made it out the back with two gunshot wounds.
Around this time, Buck partnered with rapper D-Tay and the duo released the Thuggin' Til the End album on Next Level in 2000. The album didn't make much of an impact, but Cash Money was back on the phone, asking Buck to return to the label. He did, but after two weeks of just sitting around the office, Buck felt he was stuck once again. He ran into Juvenile -- who was ready to split with Cash Money at the time -- and hit the road with the rapper. When the tour hit New York City Buck met 50 Cent and was soon asked to join his G-Unit crew. He did -- with Juvenile's blessing -- and co-wrote and appeared on the 50 Cent track "Bloodhound." G-Unit's full-length debut, Beg for Mercy, brought Buck to everyone's attention in 2003. It had gone double platinum by the time Buck's first G-Unit associated record, Straight Outta Cashville, appeared on Interscope in 2004. Three years later he returned with the hard hitting Buck the World. ~ David Jeffries