Hailing from Brooklyn, AZ made his debut on one of hip-hop's most revered classics, spitting alongside Nas on "Life's A Bitch" off Illmatic. His first solo album Doe Or Die followed soon after, winning fans thanks to his intense and eloquent street rhymes. Though highly respected among his peers, industry problems and bootleggers seemed to side-track his promising career. He was down with the disapointing Firm project, and none of his later albums really sold like they should have. Despite these problems, AZ still rips the mic. In 2001, he released 9 Lives and appeared on Nas' Stillmatic. The following year he dropped the excellent Aziatic.