Diddy Reveals His Personal Keys to Longevity in XXL 20th Anniversary Interview
"Can't Stop Won't Stop" is the name of a song from The Lox's debut album, Money, Power & Respect, and the title of Apple Music's documentary chronicling the rise of Sean "Diddy" Combs. It's both a legendary catchphrase and a claim that's been so embedded in rap culture, it's become a cliché. But perhaps more so than anything else, it's an accurate way to describe the seeming inevitability of the Bad Boy Entertainment founder's success.
He reinvented the remix, is the Bad Boy brainchild and the man responsible for introducing the world to Notorious B.I.G. As the ultimate rapper-mogul, he elevated trash-talking to an art form and landed at the top of Forbes’ 2017 list of Hip-Hop Cash Kings. He's a multi-platinum selling rap superstar, a walking case study in flawless personal branding and is legitimately much more than the sum of his parts and as a result, a defining voice in hip-hop.
As you can see, Diddy's been a lot of things, and taking on all of those roles means he's seen even more. One of those things is the evolution of XXL Magazine, which launched the very same year Biggie Smalls died. Being in that position, he's got a good vantage point for assessing the growth of the publication, and that—in addition to our longstanding friendship with him and Bad Boy—is the reason Diddy's gotten his own cover for our 20th anniversary issue.
"XXL came in with a no-fear mentality and has been consistent in that for the last 20 years. Especially being a platform for new artists," Diddy says in our 2017 Fall cover story written by XXL Editor-in-Chief, Vanessa Satten. "The XXL cover is something that is a part of hip-hop culture, it’s a part of the zeitgeist of hip-hop culture. So, it’s really a celebration right now. XXL, 20 years of hip-hop, hip-hop being the No. 1 force of music right now. It’s just really coming full circle."
Diddy is just one of the artists selected to appear on XXL's 20 special edition covers. Like the Bad Boy Entertainment boss, these rappers have been documented by XXL through the extent of their careers and have always shown love to the brand that helped raise their profiles along with away. Diddy's fellow cover stars are 50 Cent, the cover king with 15 total XXL covers and a career we’ve been documenting from the start; Nicki Minaj, a queen in hip-hop building her own pinkprint in the game; Wiz Khalifa, the cool, calm and collected superstar; Cam’ron, Harlem’s swag connoisseur; Lil Uzi Vert; the face of hip-hop’s new generation; Migos, three rappers who helped redefine the culture; Snoop Dogg, the Doggfather of the game; Pusha T, a success story as a group member, solo artist and record executive; Future, a trendsetting trap god; T.I., rap’s gangsta and gentleman; Fabolous, a highly respected New York MC; Rae Sremmurd, the real crowd-pleasers; Birdman, a No. 1 stunna with a revered empire; Run The Jewels, partners in rhyme and reason; Yo Gotti, a testament to tenacity; Gucci Mane, the true comeback kid; Tech N9ne; an independent icon; E-40; hip-hop’s in-the-know uncle; and The Lox, a trinity representing for the streets.
Watch Diddy Reveal His Personal Keys to Longevity
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