Before the days of Nicki Minaj, even before the days of Foxy Brown, there was Lil' Kim. Although Kim's debut album, only dropped a week before Foxy's 'Ill Na Na,' the buzz surrounding 'Hard Core' was deafening in 1996. The Brooklyn native had already created an image for herself with the help of her mentor Biggie Smalls but this was her opportunity to shine outside of the Junior Mafia clique. And that's exactly what she did. 'Hard Core' featured countless hits including 'Crush on You' and 'No Time.' Outside of the commercial joints, Kim had a number of dope album cuts on there as well. Most of her fan base today still rocks with her based on this legendary debut where Kim not only exuded sex appeal but power in an industry full of men.

 

Watch Lil' Kim's 'Crush on You' Video