Today in Hip Hop History: November 2, 1998
Juvenile of the Hot Boyz released his third studio album, 400 Degreez, through Cash Money Records in 1998. The album was produced by Bryan “Baby” Williams, Ronald “Slim” Williams and Mannie Fresh. It features outside vocals from Mannie, Big Tymers, B.G., Lil Wayne, Turk, Jay-Z and more. Interestingly enough, Jay-Z was the only feature or producer that came from outside of the label Cash Money.
400 Degreez was Juvenile’s first album to be released underneath a major record label after releasing a few albums independently, alongside his work with the Hot Boyz. The album featured three singles; “Ha,” “Back That Azz Up,” and “Follow Me Now.” The song “Back That Azz Up” was a hit in the United States. It peaked at #19 on the Billboard Hot 100 and remains one of Juvenile’s most known songs to this day.
It is also said that Lil Wayne’s album 500 Degreez was named in honor of Juvenile’s album, but some have also argued that Weezy named it that to prove his dominance in rapping skills over Juvenile. Regardless, both albums are great.
400 Degreez received fairly favorable reviews from critics. The album peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Chart and #9 on the U.S. Billboard 200. It was his best-selling album of his solo career and introduced Juvenile to mainstream hip hop. It was also the best-selling album ever released through Cash Money Records. It became RIAA Certified Quadruple Platinum in 1999.