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Nelly’s resume is often downplayed but his impact can’t be denied. He says the era he thrived in was the hardest era of Hip-Hop ever.

Vibe is reporting the St. Louis, Missouri, native has got the Rap community in a heavy debate. The rapper was recently a guest on The Shop where he joined Maverick Carter and others in a discussion about not only his career but the culture overall. He was quick to point out that his success from his multi-platinum debut album was bitter sweet for a couple of reasons. “Country Grammar sold five million and I didn’t even get nominated for Best New Artist” he said.

He would go on to claim that the competitive landscape around that time was the toughest it has ever been. “When I put out songs, I had to go against DMX, Jay-Z, Eminem, Lil Wayne, 50 Cent, [Ludacris] he began. “All of us are fighting for one spot. So from ’99 to 2008 to 2010, it’s the hardest ever to get records.” Naturally, his statement got the cast and guests to start thinking about that distinct period in Rap, and while everyone on the set didn’t agree everyone understood why the “Ride Wit Me” rapper felt like this.

You can watch the group discussion between Nelly, Cedric the Entertainer, Maverick Carter, Paul Rivera, and Becky Hammon below about Rap’s hardest era starting at the 18-minute mark.