Music mogul Sean Combs has reinvented himself and his name numerous times since the 1990s. The artist went from Puff Daddy to P. Diddy and now he’s embracing his new middle name “Love.”
In the September cover story for Vanity Fair, Combs describes the Puff Daddy era as “this young, brash, bold hip-hop, unapologetic swagger on a million and just fearlessness and really doing it for the art and rooted.” He adds, “When I changed names, I put periods on those eras.”
The 51-year-old is predominately known for launching his legendary label Bad Boy Records and signing artists such as The Notorius B.I.G., Junior M.A.F.I.A., Lil’ Kim, Faith Evans and 112, among others. Although the Bad Boy era brought him Grammys and plenty of hit records, it also led to a beef between Biggie and Tupac and the latter’s L.A.-based label, Death Row Records.
“Puff Daddy had just got through East-West war,” Combs says. “Nobody wanted to get in the room with me. They thought they was going to get shot.”
After that period, Combs notes about how his Diddy era began, “I wanted to get into other businesses. And so Biggie had called me Diddy because of my bop, the way I walk, my swagger, and they got something called the diddy bop that…was something before me. That’s the diddy bop. It’s the way a brother would walk around, walk down the street.”
Since those days, Combs has expanded his empire and influence over music and culture with his Sean John fashion brand, branding partnerships with liquor companies, and his “all R&B label.”
“I am the happiest I’ve ever been in life,” Combs says. “I laugh the most, I smile the most, I breathe the most.”
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