|Editor||Jonathan Shecter/Adario Strange/Selwyn Seyfu Hinds/Kim Osorio|
|Frequency||1–2 per year|
|Company||The NorthStar Group|
|Based in||New York City, New York, U.S.|
The Source is an American hip hop and entertainment website, and a magazine that publishes annually or semiannually . It is the world's longest-running rap periodical, being founded as a newsletter  in 1988 by David Mays. 
In 1999 The Los Angeles Times reported that, based on data from Alliance for Audited Media, formerly known as Audit Bureau of Circulations (North America), the print edition of The Source was "the No. 1-selling music magazine on newsstands in America."  By 2009, they were among those losing readership and advertising income. 
The magazine's website began in 1998.  At that point the monthly print magazine was celebrating its 100th issue. 
Others who were involved as co-owners/editors include Raymond 'Ray Benzino' Leon Scott. Between 2005 and 2010 the magazine did not award any of its '5 mic' awards. 
The Record Report is a section in the publication in which the magazine's staff rates hip-hop albums. Ratings range from one to five mics, paralleling a typical five-star rating scale. An album that is rated at four-and-a-half or five mics is considered by The Source to be a superior hip hop album.  Over the first ten years or so, the heralded five-mic rating only applied to albums that were universally lauded hip hop albums.  A total of 45 albums have been awarded five mics; a complete, chronological list is below. 
Albums that originally received five mics: 
Albums that were not rated upon their releases, but were later rated five mics in 2002: 
Albums that originally received 4.5 mics, and were later re-rated to five: 
Albums that originally received four mics, and were later re-rated to five: 
The Source released a compilation album of hip-hop hits.
|1997||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits||38||25|
|1998||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 2||46||29|
|1999||The Source Hip Hop Music Awards 1999||45||53|
|1999||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 3||45||29|
|2000||The Source Hip Hop Music Awards 2000||17||16|
|2000||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 4||43||35|
|2001||The Source Hip Hop Music Awards 2001||28||34|
|2001||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 5||47||38|
|2002||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 6||35||31|
|2003||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 7||89||46|
|2004||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 8||45||43|
|2004||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 9||75||36|
|2005||The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits, Vol. 10||60||47|
Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, better known by his stage name Nas, is an American rapper. Rooted in East Coast hip hop, he is regarded as one of the greatest rappers of all time. The son of jazz musician Olu Dara, Jones began his musical career in 1989 as he adopted the moniker of "Nasty Nas" and recorded demos for Large Professor. He was later featured on the 1991 song "Live at the Barbeque" by Main Source.
The Chronic is the debut studio album by the American hip hop producer and rapper Dr. Dre. It was released on December 15, 1992, by his record label Death Row Records and distributed by Interscope Records. Recording sessions took place in June 1992 at Death Row Studios in Los Angeles and at Bernie Grundman Mastering in Hollywood.
Nathaniel Thomas Wilson, better known by his stage name Kool G Rap, is an American rapper. He began his career in the mid-1980s as one half of the group Kool G Rap & DJ Polo and as a member of the Juice Crew. He is widely considered to be one of the most influential and skilled MCs of all time, and a pioneer of mafioso rap/street/hardcore content and multisyllabic rhyming. On his album The Giancana Story, he stated that the "G" in his name stands for "Giancana", but on other occasions he has stated that it stands for "Genius".
William Michael Griffin Jr., better known by his stage name Rakim, is an American rapper and record producer. One half of golden age hip hop duo Eric B. & Rakim, he is widely regarded as one of the most influential and skilled rappers of all time.
Bernard James Freeman, known professionally as Bun B, is an American rapper. He is best known as one half of the southern rap duo UGK, a group he formed in 1987 alongside Pimp C. Aside from his work with UGK, Bun B has released five solo albums, including 2010's Trill OG, which received the rare 5-mic rating from The Source.
St. Ides is a malt liquor manufactured by the Pabst Brewing Company. The beverage contains 8.2% alcohol by volume, which is stronger than many high-alcohol malt liquors. It was launched by the McKenzie River Corporation in 1987. St. Ides gained prominence during the late 1980s and early 1990s through the use of celebrity endorsements by rap artists.
"Back in the Day" is a 2003 hip-hop song by Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, featuring guest vocals from Jay-Z and Elliott protégé Tweet. The song appears on her 2002 album Under Construction and was at one time planned for release as a single. It peaked at #86 on Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart in 2003 before being scrapped as a single.
The Hip Hop Honors is an annual event that airs on VH1. The television special honors old school and golden age hip hop rappers and contributors for their long-term influence and importance in the history of hip hop culture. It features live performances by most of the honorees along with new artists who have been influenced by them in tribute. The show is taped at the Hammerstein Ballroom in Manhattan, New York City.
Let the Rhythm Hit ’Em is the third studio album by hip hop duo Eric B. & Rakim, released on June 19, 1990. The group's sound develops further, with Rakim adopting a deeper, more aggressive tone of voice, and more mature and serious subject matter. Musically, the production ranges from smoother soulful tracks such as "In the Ghetto" to the hard-edged assault of the title track "Let the Rhythm Hit ’Em."
Golden age hip hop is a name given to mainstream hip hop music created from the mid 1980s to the early 1990s, particularly by artists and musicians originating from the New York metropolitan area. An outgrowth of the new school hip hop movement, it is characterized by its diversity, quality, innovation and influence on hip hop after the genre's emergence and establishment in the old-school era, and is associated with the development and eventual mainstream success of hip hop. There were various types of subject matter, while the music was experimental and the sampling from old records was eclectic.
Hip Hop Connection (HHC) was the longest running monthly periodical devoted entirely to hip hop culture. It was described by rapper Chuck D as "the best magazine in the world".
The Diary is the third studio album by American rapper Scarface. The album was released on October 18, 1994, by Rap-A-Lot and Noo Trybe. This album is one of the few to receive a perfect rating from both The Source Magazine and XXL. The album debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, and was certified Platinum by the RIAA on December 5, 1994.
Illmatic is the debut studio album by American rapper Nas. It was released on April 19, 1994, by Columbia Records. After signing with the label with the help of MC Serch, Nas recorded the album in 1992 and 1993 at Chung King Studios, D&D Recording, Battery Studios, and Unique Recording Studios in New York City. The album's production was handled by DJ Premier, Large Professor, Pete Rock, Q-Tip, L.E.S., and Nas himself. Styled as a hardcore hip hop album, Illmatic features multi-syllabic internal rhymes and inner-city narratives based on Nas' experiences growing up in the Queensbridge Houses in Queens, New York City.
Ridin' Dirty is the third studio album by American hip hop duo UGK. It was released on July 30, 1996 by Jive Records. Despite no music videos or official singles being released, it is their best selling album with over 850,000 copies sold to date, with 70,000 copies sold in its first week.
Stephen Anderson, better known as Bud'da, is an American producer, songwriter, composer and rapper for artists such as Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Xzibit and Aaliyah. Through the successful Westside Connection stint, and the mutual acquaintance of fellow Pittsburgh producer Sam Sneed, Dr. Dre wanted to feature snippets of a Bud’da-produced track in the beginning and end of the 2pac & Dr. Dre video for “California Love,” off Tupac Shakur’s All Eyez on Me. Soon after Dr. Dre’s historic departure from Death Row Records, Bud’da was once again recruited by Dr. Dre to co-produce the lead single "Been There, Done That" off the Dr. Dre Presents the Aftermath album.
This article summarizes the events, album releases, and album release dates in hip hop music for the year 2008.
There’s a God on the Mic: The True 50 Greatest MCs is a 2003 book by the old school hip hop MC Kool Moe Dee, where he ranks what he believes to be the Top 50 greatest MCs of all time, giving a breakdown of each artist. The book also features a foreword from Chuck D and includes full color photos from hip hop photographer Ernie Paniccioli.
Trill OG is the third solo studio album by UGK member Bun B. It is the third album in his Trill series. The album was released under Universal Music Group after Bun B left Warner Music Group's Asylum Records. The album was released August 3, 2010 on Rap-a-Lot Records and Fontana Distribution. On August 4, 2010, The Source magazine gave Trill OG its rare 5 mic rating.
Hard Knock TV is a multi-platform video production and entertainment company founded in 2005 by Nick Huff Barili. The LA-based media outlet reports on Hip-Hop and urban music, culture, sports and lifestyle news via in-depth video interviews and long-length editorial features.