Common Becomes The First Rapper Ever To Win An Oscar, An Emmy & A Grammy

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JAY-Z famously rapped on “Moment Of Clarity”: “Truthfully I wanna rhyme like Common Sense / But I did 5 mill’ – I ain’t been rhyming like Common since.” That was 2003. In the nearly 15 years following those bars, Comm’ has scored a #1 LP (Finding Forever), and filled his proverbial trophy case in a fashion that Jay, and any other artist, would presumably like to.

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Over the weekend (September 9), the Chicago, Illinois MC won his first Primetime Emmy Award for co-writing “Letter To The Free.” The song, 2016 a collaboration with Robert Glasper, appeared in Ava DuVernay’s 13th and took the “Outstanding Original Music And Lyrics” category. “I want to thank God first and foremost,” Common said following the win, according to Deadline. “Any time I get a chance to work with Ava DuVernay it leads to something positive, something strong.” Previously, Common and John Legend’s collaboration “Glory” earned the pair (as well as co-writer Rhymefest) an Oscar at the Academy Awards for “Best Original Song,” Grammy, and a Golden Globe. That track belonged to DuVernay’s 2015 film Selma.

In addition to an Emmy and Oscar, Common has three Grammy Awards, the only Rap artist to achieve this feat. Those wins came for “Love Of My Life” (with Erykah Badu) and “Southside” (with Kanye West) in the 2000s, ahead of the aforementioned “Glory” win. Eminem carries Oscar (1) and Grammy (15) wins. Meanwhile, Queen Latifah and Will Smith each have Grammy and Oscar nominations.

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Comm’ also possesses four BET awards as well as four additional BET Hip Hop Awards. He has Critics Choice, NAACP Image, and Soul Train trophies too.

“Letter To The Free,” which features Bilal vocals, was also included in last year’s Black America Again album, Common’s 11th overall.