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Single by N.O.R.E.
from the album N.O.R.E.
ReleasedSeptember 21, 1998
GenreEast Coast hip hop, Latin hip hop
LabelTommy Boy Records
Producer(s)The Neptunes
N.O.R.E. singles chronology
"You Came Up"
"Banned from T.V."

"Superthug" is a song by New York City rapper N.O.R.E. (a.k.a. Noreaga) with background vocals from Tammy Lucas[1] during the song's hook. It was released as the second single from his debut solo album, N.O.R.E.. At the time, it became Noreaga's highest charting and most successful single, peaking at No. 36 on the Billboard Hot 100 and reaching No. 1 on the Hot Rap Songs chart.[2] However it was later surpassed by his 2002 single "Nothin'" which peaked at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Along with Mase's "Lookin' at Me", the single was one of the first high-profile productions done by Virginia production team the Neptunes. It made the Neptunes well known and sought after producers in the music industry,[3] and in the first decade of the 21st century they would become one of the most successful production teams in music history, being named the Billboard magazine Producer of the Decade for the 2000s.[4]

"Superthug" would later be sampled on Janet Jackson's "Ruff (I Like It)", recorded for her Damita Jo album which failed to make the cut, although a snippet was leaked to the Internet in 2010. Jackson also considered including the song on her Discipline album.[5]


Peak positions[edit]

Chart (1998) Peak
Billboard Hot 100 36
Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks 15
Billboard Hot Rap Singles 1

Year-end charts[edit]

End of year chart (1998) Position
Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks[6] 88

Compilation appearances[edit]


  1. ^ "Noreaga - Superthug". Discogs. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "The Neptunes Biography". Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  4. ^ "Hip-Hop News, Rap Music - XXL". XXL Mag. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  5. ^ "Janet Jackson's 'Ruff (I Like It)' - Discover the Sample Source". WhoSampled. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  6. ^ Billboard Year-End Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks - 1998. 26 December 1998 – 2 January 1999. Retrieved 2011-09-11.