Trap Muzik is the second studio album by American rapper T.I., released on August 19, 2003, through Atlantic Records and his newly founded record label Grand Hustle Records. Due to the poor sales on T.I.’s debut album I’m Serious (2001), T.I. asked for a joint venture deal with Atlantic Records or he be released from his contract; he was subsequently dropped from the label. In 2003, T.I. launched Grand Hustle Records with his longtime business partner Jason Geter and signed a new deal with Atlantic Records. The album spawned the hit singles “24’s”, “Be Easy”, “Rubber Band Man”, and “Let’s Get Away”. The album features guest appearances from 8Ball & MJG, Jazze Pha, Bun B and Mac Boney. With T.I.’s longtime record producer DJ Toomp serving as an executive producer for this album. Trap Muzik debuted at number four on the US Billboard 200 and number two on the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, selling 110,000 copies in the first week. The album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Upon its release, Trap Muzik received generally favorable reviews from most music critics, who generally regarded it as a major improvement from I’m Serious. In 2012, Complex named the album one of the classic albums of the last decade
Due to the poor commercial reception of his debut album I’m Serious (2001), T.I. asked for a joint venture deal with Arista Records or to be released from his contract; he was subsequently dropped from the label. He then formed his own record label, Grand Hustle Records, with his longtime business partner Jason Geter, and began releasing mixtapes with the assistance of one of his disc jockeys, DJ Drama. T.I.’s mixtapes eventually earned attention from record labels such as Warner Bros. Records, Universal Records, Epic Records, and Columbia Records. T.I. ultimately signed a joint venture deal with Atlantic Records that year. Trap Muzik was well received. AllMusic editor Andy Kellman wrote that with Trap Muzik, the “promise T.I. showed on his flawed debut is almost fully realized”. Vibe’s Damien Lemon found that the album’s best tracks showcase T.I. rapping unaccompanied, citing “Be Easy” and “T.I. vs. T.I.P.” as highlights. Jon Caramanica of Rolling Stone described T.I. as “a hustler with a conscience and a heart” and a “limber linguist… at his best when he’s dissecting the minutiae of the game.” Raymond Fiore of Entertainment Weekly was more critical, finding his flow and lyrics to be ordinary except on tracks where he “breaks from his static Southern comfort zone”.
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