Lost and Found is the fourth and most recent studio album released by Will Smith. The album released in March 2005, spawning the singles "Switch" and "Party Starter". Lost and Found was certified Gold by the RIAA on July 6, 2005.
The album is Smith's first to be released on Interscope Records after several releases with Columbia. Guest artists on the album include Mary J. Blige, Snoop Dogg, Ludacris and long-time partner DJ Jazzy Jeff. The title comes from how Smith felt he was "lost" since he's put rap primarily on hold to do films, and "found" because he's back again. The album cover features Smith with a street sign saying West Philly & Hollywood in reference to his Philadelphia roots and current Hollywood life as a superstar.
The album is consistent in its critiques of the perceived state of hip hop, and has gained some notoriety because of a track entitled "Mr. Nice Guy", in which Smith takes slight shots at those who have criticized him in the past, namely Wendy Williams, Larry Elder, and Eminem. The first track "Here He Comes" features Will rapping about his return to rap & versatility, sampling the classic Spider-Man theme song from the 1960s cartoon. Other tracks include "If U Can't Dance (Slide)" which includes the "Women equate dance with sex" line that appears in Smith's movie Hitch, along with "Loretta", a song about a real life stalker, and "Ms. Holy Roller", which deals with Smith's view that extremist Christians are just as bad as the extremists who committed the terrorist bombings of 911, as well as aspects of his own faith and his ex-wife's conversion to Christianity. Both the title track & "I Wish I Made That Swagga" deal with Smith commenting on current hip-hop. "I Wish I Made That Swagga" is really two short songs, with the first half talking about critiques of Smith not being "black enough" and black radio not playing his music, despite high record sales. It references recent rap hits including Jay-Z's "Dirt Off Your Shoulder", Terror Squad's "Lean Back", Snoop Dogg's "Drop It Like It's Hot" as well as Smith's own 1991 hit "Summertime" from his DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince days. The second half talks about Smith's return to rap. In "Lost & Found", Smith speaks about how he doesn't do the standard "sex, drugs and violence" songs as found in popular gangsta rap and the similarities and stereotypes of current hip-hop. This also contains only very light language, such as occasional use of the word "damn", but never any "explicit" curse words, which is very common in the modern hip-hop genre. The track "Tell Me Why" is one of Smith's most emotional and dark tracks. It tells about senseless violence, about how love is unable to defeat hate on this earth. "Tell Me Why" was originally planned to be the second single from the album, but the producers of "Party Starter" had already started mixing a new version for the song for single release.