On November 14 2014, BET announced to the world that they would be cancelling their highest rated show, 106 & Park, after 14 long years. The decision came as a surprise and disappointment to most but a step in the right direction in the eyes of the network who want to focus on more online programming. 106 & Park was famous for its classic interviews, video premieres, engaging hosts and of course having the livest studio audience out of any countdown variety show in the country. Not to mention the actual countdown itself that helped propel some artists’ careers to the next level. The show was a true staple in hip-hop culture and will forever be known as a place where our culture thrived on live TV. In celebration of 106 & Park’s 14 year run, we have put together a few of the show’s most memorable moments throughout the years. Enjoy!
Arnold Schwarzenegger Does The ‘Nae Nae’ and ‘The Stanky Leg’
106 & Park was famous for its guest appearances and entertaining interviews. Most of the show’s guest were hip-hop artists or important figures in our culture but every once and a while they would throw in a curveball. The terminator himself graced 106 & Park with some interesting dance moves this past March. Accompanied by actor Joe Manganiello, Arnold had no holds barred when hitting the ‘nae nae’ and the ‘stanky leg’. Sure, he was a little stiff, but he got the hang of them pretty quick. Check the video below and see for yourself.
Rocsi Diaz Walks Off Stage
From 2006 until 2012, 106 & Park was hosted by Rocsi Diaz and Terrence J. The two had amazing chemistry on stage creating some of the show’s most memorable moments; so much so that they it was often rumored they were romantically involved. However, in the summer of 2008, their playful banter got out of hand causing Rocsi to walk off stage during a live taping. The viewers at home and live audience were in total shock for what seemed to be weeks to come. Some claim the whole thing was scripted but the look in her eyes says otherwise. Either way, they eventually made up and the show rolled on. Take a look at the footage below.
Jin Dominating Freestyle Fridays
106 & Park was also a breeding for hungry battle emcees. Every Friday they would put on a segment called Freestyle Friday which would pit two amateur battle rappers together to clash in a short rap battle. Each rapper would have 30 seconds to rap their best freestyle in attempts to clown the other and win over the judges. The winning rapper would then move on to the following week’s battle to try and defend their title. The segment was so well received that they even started a bracket style tournament every March that would last the better part of the month. Most of the rappers featured on Freestyle Fridays never really amounted to any hip-hop stardom except for one; Jin. The Chinese-American emcee from Florida got inducted into the Hall of Fame after winning seven battles in a row. He even got a big look from the Ruff Ryders who eventually signed him. Check a few of his battles below.
Kanye West vs. 50 Cent
Back in September 2007, both 50 Cent and Kanye West had big albums dropping on the exact same day. Now, if you know anything about hip-hop kingpins than you know how competitive things can get; especially with album sales. So naturally, 50 Cent challenged Kanye to see who’s album would have more first week sales. The challenge was accepted in a heartbeat, sparking tons of publicity around both Graduation and Curtis. The two rappers took their ultimate showdown to 106 & Park where things got heated. In the video below you can see Kanye performing alongside Jay-Z which shortly after turned into 50 Cent saying that he could “take on Kanye and his big brother“. Unfortunately for 50, Kanye ended up outselling him by 250,000 copies in the first week. Sorry, 50.
Aaliyah’s Last Interview
This was an iconic yet sad moment for not only 106 & Park, but music altogether. On August 21st, 2001, Aaliyah’s last TV appearance aired on 106 & Park, a mere 4 days before the infamous plane crash that claimed her life. This interview may have been only ten minutes in length but spoke extremely loud to the artist and person Aaliyah was. She talks to hosts AJ and Free about her charity contest, upcoming videos, movie roles and her, at the time, latest album. 106 & Park has had many quality interviews over its 14 year run but this one takes the cake. Long live Aaliyah.