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One of New York's more promising rappers of the mid-2000s, Stimuli began making a big name for himself on the mixtape scene with his Mixtape Chronicles series, which garnered him a considerable amount of attention and positioned him for a bright future. The Brooklyn rapper grew up in the midst of hip-hop culture, which no doubt affected his style of rapping -- he boasts the demeanor and verbal dexterity of a golden age MC yet delivers his rhymes with hardcore muscle. His older brother is Lord Digga, a producer who is best known for working with Masta Ace yet also associated with Biggie and the Juice Crew. Stimuli spent a lot of time hanging out with his brother, including stints in the studio, and thus became acquainted with the ins and outs of the hip-hop game at a very early age. He began to grace recordings during the late '90s (debuting on DJ Mark Ronson's "Turntables") but began to make some really big moves during the early 2000s, when he was in his early twenties. Mixtapes were certainly an effective medium for him to promote his skills, but Stimuli was also recognized for his ability to rock a crowd, whether freestyle or as the opening act of a concert (some of his first performances were opening stints for the Diplomats and Styles P, respectively). The media began to recognize him around this time as well, including such publications as The Source (who awarded him one of their monthly Unsigned Hype notices), Allhiphop.com (who considered it "highly likely" that he'd be "the next big thing to come out of Brooklyn"), Complex Magazine, Chronic Magazine, Urban Network, Phatsoundsproduction.com, and more. His Mixtape Chronicles series really spread the word around the New York area, and by the time he released his second volume, Follow My Lead (2004), he was primed for a jump to the majors. ~ Jason Birchmeier