50 Cent launches line of headphones

Curtis Jackson, known in the hip hop world as rapper 50 Cent is muscling in on the high end headphone market currently dominated by one of his mentors, Dr. Dre.

“Fiddy” as he is commonly called, drew a crowd of about 200 autograph seekers when he showed up at J&R in Lower Manhattan last week to promote his SMS Headphones in direct competition to Beats.

Fans shared their excitement over seeing the rap star, especially those who didn’t know he was coming. To 21-year old Khye Bowie, there was an extra element. He told DNA Info that when he got to the front of the line, he told 50 Cent how inspired he was by the Queens-born rapper’s life story.

“It’s amazing, man. He’s a true genius to come out of the projects and be a millionaire,” Bowie said.

“Fiddy” has indeed come a long way from his troubled days as a childhood drug dealer, following in the footsteps of his deceased mother and selling crack cocaine on the streets of South Jamaica. He grew up in the era of gangsta rap which combined with scenes from his own violent hard knocks life, provided him with plenty of material for his music. He earned his GED in prison while incarcerated on drug charges. And Jam Master Jay taught him how to count bars, write choruses, structure songs, and how to make a record. His life changed dramatically, and he credits much of his maturity and change in direction to the presence of his son Marquis, now 14 years old. He said in an interview with AOL Music in 2003,

“I don’t try to sugar coat it or nothing… I try to explain it [to] him that I’m blessed and in a situation that I can provide another situation for him him so he don’t have to go through that… the only reason I took him to shoot the “Wanksta” video is I wanted to show him there was other things out there to do outside of what’s goin on right there.”

He says he is more than just a celebrity promoting a product.

For every pair of headphones he sells, the rapper is working with the nonprofit Feeding America to provide meals for 250 people.

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