Benefit

Benefit

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Benefit is an American hip hop artist and producer. He is known for being the first artist to go viral on the internet and have his music spread globally with no recording or marketing budget. In 1999 Benefit created the album B.E.N.E.F.I.T using a $5 microphone and $12 sound card. He partnered with underground music pirates to have his music distributed across a network of underground FTP sites. His music spread throughout the internet, and went viral. By 2000 Napster had emerged and exploded as a controversial peer to peer network for sharing music. In partnership with Chuck D from Public Enemy, Napster held a contest where artists would write & perform a song in support of the platform. Benefit entered the contest along with over 800 other artists. The uploaded songs were judged, and Benefit won the contest. His music went viral again on the Napster platform, and spread globally reaching millions of people. Benefit disappeared for over a decade and very little was known about him. Rumors of his death circulated online. In 2013, Benefit resurfaced in an episode of the Vice/Noisey show “Live From the Streets created by Mr. Green and Sam Lipman-Stern. The episode featured Benefit and Matisyahu performing a new song called “Human in Disguise”. Since resurfacing, Benefit has released additional songs and has been been featured on songs such as “Metal is Out” produced by Mr. Green on the album “Unpredictable” by Malik B of The Roots.

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