Home |  NewsStream |  eTracks |  Artists |  Podcast |  About
Go to home page
  NMC >  Artists >  Will Smith
Will Smith
Will Smith was born in Philadelphia, PA on September 25, 1968. By the time Smith hits 30 years of age, he claim the rights to be called a Grammy Award winning rapper, solo star, box-office star, television success, and... all-round nice guy. By bringing comedy and positive meaning into his rap music, Smith has shown himself to be one of the few true role models for the youth that buy hip hop music. Smith's charming and sly demeanor in school resulted in the nickname "Prince" which eventually turned into the "Fresh Prince." While still in his teens, Smith began rapping and eventually hooked up with Jeff Townes (aka D.J. Jazzy Jeff) who he met at a party. Smith's goal for a musical career resulted in Smith turning down a scholarship to attend M.I.T. D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince was born with Smith handling the singing and Townes overseeing the mastery of mixing and scratching - the combination was hit a pop and hip hop hit during the 80's.

1987 D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince released Rock The House. The track "Girls Ain't Nothing But Trouble" was a moderate R&B hit (and re-released a year later).

1988 D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince released their breakthrough LP, He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper with the radio and video favorites "Parents Just Don't Understand" and "Nightmare On My Street." The LP went on to sell over 3 million copies in the U.S.

He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper was certified gold.

He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper was certified platinum.

He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper was certified 2x platinum.

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince won the first MTV Video Music Award for newly created Best Rap category.

Rock The House was certified gold.

1989 D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance ("Parents Just Don't Understand") - the first time this category was presented.

The single "Parents Just Don't Understand" was certified gold.

The duo won a MTV Video Music Award for Best Rap Video ("Parents Just Don't Understand").

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince's follow-up LP, And In This Corner... yielded little success with the moderate hit "I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson." At this time, the rap and hip hop scene was changing on radio and video, and D.J. Jazzy Jeff needed to move beyond the parody-like concept that originally brought them success

1990 And In This Corner... was certified gold.

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince were nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group ("I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson").

The acting bug hit Smith and resulted in a NBC sitcom, Fresh Prince Of Bel Air.

1991 D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince were nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group (And In This Corner...).

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince hit the Top 40 with "Summertime."

Homebase was released and the duo was back in the Top 10 with the feel good song of the summer, "Summertime." Rolling Stone said of the LP: "...steers clear of misogyny, violence and garden furniture, and in the process hits the button almost every time..."

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince hit the Top 10 with "Summertime."

The single "Summertime" was certified platinum.

Homebase was certified platinum.

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince hit the Top 40 with "Ring My Bell."

The single "Ring My Bell" was certified gold.

1992 D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince won an American Music Award for Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Album (Homebase) and was nominated for Favorite Soul/R&B Band/Duo/Group and Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Artist.

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince won a second Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group ("Summertime").


1993 Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince: # 81 Singles Artist of the Year

Smith appeared in Six Degrees Of Separation. Although some controversy erupted when Smith refused to have his homosexual character kiss another man on-screen, Smith's performance was critically acclaimed.

Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince hit the Top 40 with "Boom! Shake The Room."

The last studio LP by Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince was released: Code Red. The duo had a hit with "Boom! Shake The Room" and the LP increased their "street credibility" with the fans.

Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince hit the Top 10 with "Boom! Shake The Room."

1994 Code Red was certified gold.

1995 He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper was certified 3x platinum.

Smith hit box-office gold with his starring role in Bad Boys.

1996 The box-office got even bigger for Smith when he starred in the blockbuster Independence Day.

1997 # 43 Singles Artist of the Year

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Men In Black."

Smith's Men In Black topped the summer box-office for the year and produced a #1 soundtrack and the #1 title track.

Smith hit the Top 10 with "Men In Black."

"Men In Black" topped the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Airplay chart for 4 weeks.

Smith found himself being sued for libel by Dana Goodman, Smith's original record promoter, after an interview in US magazine was released. The article portrayed Smith's original record promoter in a poor light without naming names. The interview stated that Smith and rap partner DJ Jazzy Jeff were intimidated into signing a record contract when the unnamed promoter placed a gun on the dashboard.

Smith hit #1 for a week with "Men In Black."

Smith won a MTV Video Music Award for Best Video From A Film ("Men In Black") and was nominated for Best Male Video, Best Choreography, and Best Special Effects.

Smith released Big Willie Style which contained his #1 hit "Men In Black," "Just The Two Of Us," and "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" which topped the ARC Weekly Top 40 in 1998. Although the LP had a lack-luster debut compared with other charting rap LPs, the popularity of Smith and his music led the LP to the Top 10 and over 4 million copies sold in the U.S. by the fall of '98.

Smith capped off the year by marrying his longtime girlfriend, actress Jada Pinkett, on New Year's Eve.

Big Willie Style was certified platinum.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It."

During the year, Smith won a MTV Europe Music Award for Best Rap Act and was inducted into the Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Awards Hall of Fame.

1998 # 3 Singles Artist of the Year (# 1 Male Artist of the Year)
Smith won his first solo Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance ("Men In Black"). Smith hit the Top 10 with "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It."

Smith hit #1 with "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" for 2 weeks.
The single also topped the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart for 3 weeks and the Hot 100 Singles Sales chart for 2 weeks.

D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince returned temporarily in the form of the LP, Greatest Hits.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Just The Two Of Us."

Big Willie Style was certified 2x platinum.

Smith hit the Top 10 with "Just The Two Of Us."

Big Willie Style was certified 3x platinum.

Men In Black" topped the UK Singles chart for 3 weeks.

Smith topped the Billboard Rap Singles chart with "Just The Two Of Us" for 2 weeks.

Smith won 2 MTV Video Music Awards for Best Male Video ("Just The Two Of Us") and Best Rap Video ("Gettin' Jiggy Wit It") and was nominated for Best Choreography, Best Dance Video, Viewer's Choice, and Video of the Year ("Gettin' Jiggy Wit It"). When accepting the award for "Just The Two Of Us," Smith came on stage with his son: "It's really a song about the other side of divorce... so I really want to thank my wife and actually, I want to thank my ex-wife for both of them being mature enough to make the situation turn out on the positive, happy side."

Big Willie Style was certified 4x platinum.

Smith landed another hit film with Enemy Of The State.

The single "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" was certified gold.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Miami."

Smith's LP, Big Willie Style, was the 8th biggest-selling LP of 1998 with 3.6 million copies sold in the U.S. during the year.

Other awards for Smith during the year included a Billboard Video Music Award for Best Clip (Pop) ("Just The Two Of Us"), a European Music Award for Best Male Video, a Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Award for Favorite Movie Actor, a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Rap Artist, 2 MTV Movie Awards for Best Fight (with a giant alien cockroach in Men In Black) and Best Song, and a MuchMusic Video Award for People's Choice Favorite International Artist.

1999 # 17 Singles Artist of the Year

Smith won 3 American Music Awards for Favorite Pop/Rock Album, Favorite Soul/R&B Album, and Favorite Soul/R&B Male Artist, and was nominated for Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist.

Smith hit the Top 10 with "Miami."

Smith won his 4th Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance ("Gettin' Jiggy Wit It").

Big Willie Style was certified 6x platinum.

Smith picked up 3 NAACP Image Awards for Entertainer of the Year, Outstanding Music Video, and Outstanding Rap Artist ("Just The Two Of Us") and a Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Award for Favorite Singer.

The Los Angeles Times reported that DJ Jazzy Jeff was currently working on his solo LP in Philadelphia.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Wild, Wild West."

In the summer, Smith could be seen on the big screen in Wild Wild West and heard on the radio with the title track from the film - "Wild, Wild West" hit the Top 10.

Smith took home a Blockbuster Award for Favorite Artist - Rap.

Smith hit the #1 for 1 week with "Wild, Wild West" (which also topped the Billboard Hot 100 for a week, the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Sales chart for a week, and the Billboard Rap Singles chart for 3 weeks).

The single "Wild, Wild West" was certified gold.

Smith won a MTV Video Music Award for Best Male Video ("Miami") and was nominated for Best Special Effects and Best Cinematography ("Miami"), Video of the Year, Best Video from a Film, and Best Choreography ("Wild, Wild West").

Smith was nominated for a VH1 Fashion Award for Most Fashionable Artist (Male).

Smith was nominated for 2 MTV Europe Music Awards for Best Male Artist (which he won) and Best Hip-Hop Artist.

Smith released his next LP, Willennium and won a MTV European Music Award for Best Male Artist.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Will 2K."

Smith was nominated for a People's Choice Award for Favorite Male performer.

Smith ended the year with some bad news when his film Wild Wild West was selected as one of the worst films of the year by numerous movie critics.

Willennium was certified 2x platinum.

Smith hit the Top 10 with "Will 2K."

MTV: 100 Greatest Videos Ever Made includes "Parents Just Don't Understand" at # 99.

2000 # 73 Singles Artist of the Year

Smith won an American Music Award for Favorite Male Artist.

Smith was nominated for a Brit Award for Best International Male Solo Artist.

Big Willie Style was certified 8x platinum.

Smith was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance ("Wild, Wild West"). Smith performed "Freakin It" and "Wild, Wild West" at the Grammys, but went home empty-handed.

Smith was nominated for a Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul or Rap Music Video ("Will 2K") and some Kids' Choice Award for Favorite Song and Favorite Song from a Movie ("Wild, Wild West") and Favorite Male Singer.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Freakin It."

Smith's summer flick Wild Wild West was named Worst Picture of 1999 at the Golden Raspberry ("Razzie") Awards, the film's theme song "Wild, Wild West" was named Worst Original Song, and Smith was singled out with co-star Kevin Kline as Worst Screen Couple.

Smith won a California Music Award for Outstanding Hip-Hop/Rap Album.

Smith won 3 Kids' Choice Awards for Favorite Male Singe, Favorite Song, and Favorite Song From a Movie ("Wild, Wild West").

Smith won 4 World Music Awards for World's Best-Selling Male Pop Artist, Male R&B Artist, Male Dance Artist, and Male Rap Artist.

A lawsuit was filed against Smith by The Furious Five over Smith's sampling of their "Superappin'" on his "Will 2K" hit.

Big Willie Style was certified 9x platinum.

VH1: 100 Greatest Dance Songs includes Smith's "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" at #100.

Smith could be seen starring in the film The Legend Of Bagger Vance with Matt Damon.

Smith is putting aside music for a little while as assumes the role of Muhammad Ali in an up-coming film: "I'm not doing anything with music. I'm not doing anything but training. I train 3 hours in the morning, and I train 3 hours in the evening. Then, in between, I'm doing dialect work, and I'm working with Michael Man (director). I'm becoming Muhammad Ali... that's all I do."

Smith became a dad again.

Smith took home a 'My VH1' Award - Double Threat (Musician, Actors).

2001 Smith was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Music Video, Short Form ("Will 2K").

Smith was nominated for a Kids' Choice Award for Favorite Male Singer.

VH1: 100 Greatest Videos includes: # 42 - "Parents Just Don't Understand" (by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince).

Smith's movie Ali broke Christmas-day box office records when it opened in theaters.

2002 Smith was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Drama for Ali.

Smith was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for Ali. Smith said of the nomination: "If this was the rap category at the Grammys, I'd feel like I have a much better shot... I don't care who wins. I am completely honored to be in the company in this category." Smith was up against Russell Crowe, Sean Penn, Tom Wilkinson, and the winner, Denzel Washington.

Smith hit the Top 40 with "Black Suits Comin' (Nod Ya Head)."

Smith performed on the Today Show Summer Concert Series.

Smith released Born To Reign.

Smith won a BET Award for Best Actor (Ali).

Smith won a MTV Movie Award for Best Male Performance (Ali).

Born To Reign was certified gold.

Smith's video for "Black Suits Comin' (Nod Ya Head)" was nominated for 2 MTV Video Music Awards for Best Special Effects (Pixel Envy) and Best Video from a Film.

Smith ranked # 29 on VH1: 100 Sexiest Artists.

Smith released a hits collection - Greatest Hits.

2003 VH1: 50 Greatest Hip Hop Artists includes Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince at # 30.

Smith could be seen in the big-budget sequel Bad Boys II which was the #1 movie of the week when it was released.

2004 Smith could be seen in the movie I, Robot which was the #1 movie of the week when it was released.

Smith could be heard in the animated feature Shark Tale.

--- from the official Will Smith website

Fantasy Music League

Manage Will Smith's career in the Fantasy Music League now!


NewsStream


Available Albums



Will Smith
Lost & Found
2005




Will Smith
Lost and Found
2005


Tue, Oct 24th
NMC Colors
NMC on your body?
Visit the NMC Store!

[ADV] MusicMatch Jukebox is free... for Macintosh and Windows!

Join the NMC Crew!


BMI Licensing for Webcasters

ASCAP The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers

SESAC Performing Rights Organization for Songwriters and Publishers