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Before his 2007 smash "Shawty," Plies was best known as the Fort Myers rapper whose entourage opened fire from the stage of a crowded club after the rapper's set was cut 15 minutes short. Following the outbreak, Plies was booked and subsequently released on $5,000 bail. The incident set back the Florida rapper's career; squeamish record label suits felt the shooting would lead to bad publicity. This would all prove to be irrelevant after the success of "Shawty," which featured celebrated R&B singer T-Pain on the hook. His subsequent album, The Real Testament, was released in the summer of 2007. By this time, Plies had developed a winning formula: dividing his album between radio-friendly love jawns ("Hypnotized," "Bust It Baby") and more street-savvy fare. In 2008, Plies managed to release two hit albums (Definition of Real and Da REAList), which was quite an accomplishment in hip-hop's diminished marketplace.

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