Some of JAY-Z’s early and breakthrough Rap appearances came courtesy of his Marcy projects neighbor, Jaz-O. The Jaz, who was signed to EMI Records, featured his friend Jay on video singles “Hawaiian Sophie” and “The Originators.” At the time, the two Brooklyn MCs employed a similar stuttered rhyme style.
However, just as Jay’s career started to take flight, Jaz’s was shifted gears. 1996’s Reasonable Doubt featured Jaz-produced single “Ain’t No Ni**a” as well as a vocal appearance on “Bring It On.” Jaz became a staple on Jay’s first three albums. He appeared in sequel single, “Jigga What, Jigga Who (Originators ’99)” on the five-times-platinum Vol. 2…Hard Knock Life album.
However, the two drifted apart by the early 2000s. When Jay’s Roc-A-Fella Records tried to bring Jaz-O (as well as Sauce Money) under contract, things soured (according to Jay’s 2009 “What We Talkin’ About” verse). No longer teammates, disses quickly transpired in the early 2000s, on both sides.