While it can be hard to imagine now, a lot of the musicians currently ripping down stages and burning up the Billboard charts, at one point, needed a helping hand getting into the recording industry. Everybody needs to start somewhere and luckily for these artists they were introduced and mentored by just the right person to set off their careers. From mixtapes to million-dollar deals, check out our gallery of Superstar Musicians and the Larger Than Life Protégés.
Jay-Z & Kanye West
As two equally strong rappers on their own, its hard to remember the time when Kayne was the little brother in awe of Jay-Z. Last summer their joint album,Watch The Throne, dominated the charts and the accompanying tour sold out arenas.
Kanye West & John Legend
While John Legend has evolved into artist whose sound is more in the Adult Contemporary lane, he started out as the first artist signed to Kanye's G.O.O.D. Music label.
Jay-Z & Rihanna
Big brother Jay-Z strikes again with a winning larger than life protege with starting Rihanna's career. Six albums later Jay still puts his stamp on RiRi's tracks and appeared on her latest album Talk That Talk.
Bird Man & Lil Wayne
One can consider the original Cash Money Crew the generational fathers of our current rap scene. Bird Man has continued to hang tight as a mentor to Lil' Wayne, who calls him his "Daddy."
Lil Wayne & Drake
Next in the Cash Money lineage, Lil' Wayne put the cosign stamp on a Toronto child-actor who was running around doing freestyles and garnering buzz. With that much needed mentor at the helm, Drake burst onto the music scene and continues to dominate it all on his own.
Lil Wayne & Nicki Minaj
Lil' Wayne, father to many in the rap game, also brought out Nicki Minaj, who has transformed from a mixtape rappin' Nicki Miraj to a platinum selling Harajuki Barbie.
Usher & Justin Beiber
From his floppy mop top origins to his current psuedo-tatted up heartthrob status, pop star Justin Beiber can attribute his entrance into the limelight to R&B singer Usher Raymond.
Diana Ross & Michael Jackson
For this last protege and larger than life profile, we're gonna take it way back!
The late and great Michael Jackson got his introduction to the world under the loving wings of Miss Diana Ross. Ross, a living legend in her own right, remained friends with Michael for decades until his passing in 2009. Jackson was the epitome of a larger than life star.
StyleBlazers, do you think these mentees' have stolen their mentors' shine?
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