Lonnie Rashid Lynn, Jr. (born March 13, 1972), better known by his stage name Common (formerly Common Sense), is an American rapper and actor.

Common debuted in 1992 with the album Can I Borrow a Dollar? and maintained a significant underground following into the late 1990s, after which he gained notable mainstream success through his work with the Soulquarians.[1] His first major-label album, Like Water for Chocolate, received widespread critical acclaim and tremendous commercial success[2] His first Grammy award was in 2003 for Best R&B Song for "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" with Erykah Badu.[3] Its popularity was matched by May 2005's Be, which was nominated in the 2006 Grammy Awards for Best Rap Album. Common was awarded his second Grammy for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group, for "Southside" (featuring Kanye West), from his July 2007 album Finding Forever. His best-of album, Thisisme Then: The Best of Common, was released on November 27, 2007.

Common has also initiated a burgeoning acting career, starring significant roles in such films as Smokin' Aces, Street Kings, American Gangster, Wanted, Terminator Salvation, Date Night, Just Wright, Happy Feet Two, and New Year's Eve. He also narrated the award-winning documentary Bouncing Cats, about one man's efforts to improve the lives of children in Uganda through hip-hop/b-boy culture.[4] He currently stars as Elam Ferguson on the AMC western television series Hell on Wheels.


1992 Can I Borrow a Dollar? Relativity Records
1994 Resurrection
1997 One Day It'll All Make Sense
2000 Like Water for Chocolate MCA Records
Universal Records
2002 Electric Circus
2005 Be GOOD
Imani Entertainment
2007 Finding Forever
2008 Universal Mind Control
2011 The Dreamer/The Believer Think Common
Warner Bros.
2013 TBA GOOD Music
2012 Nas.Com (with Nas)[39] Def Jam
Cruel Summer (with GOOD Music) GOOD Music


2002 Brown Sugar Himself Cameo
2006 Dave Chapelle's Block Party Himself Cameo
2007 Smokin' Aces Sir Ivy
2007 American Gangster Turner Lucas
2008 Street Kings Coates
2008 Wanted The Gunsmith
2009 Dow Jones Dow Jones Video short
2010 Date Night Detective Collins
2010 Just Wright Scott McKnight
2010 Bouncing Cats Himself/Narrator
2011 Happy Feet Two Seymour
2011 New Year's Eve Nurse Aimee's Husband Cameo
2012 LUV Uncle Vincent Also producer
2012 Ali 70 from Las Vegas Television film
2012 The Odd Life of Timothy Green Coach Cal
2013 Pawn Jeff Porter
2013 Now You See Me Evans
2003 Girlfriends Omar Episode: "Take This Poem and Call Me in the Morning"
2004 Game Over Cammon
2004 One on One Darius Episode: "Cabin Fever"
2011 Single Ladies Mayor Howard Episode: "Pilot"
2011–present Hell on Wheels Elam Ferguson Main Role
Video Game
2009 Wanted: Weapons of Fate Brummel Voice
2009 Terminator Salvation Barnes Voice

Awards and nominations

AwardsYearTypeSong or albumNotes
BET Awards 2003 Video of the Year "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Won
Viewer's Choice "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Won
Best Collaboration "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
2006 Best Male Hip-Hop Artist Nominated
BET Hip Hop Awards 2006 Element Award – Lyricist of the Year Won
Hip-Hop Video of the Year "Testify" Nominated
2007 Lyricist of the Year Won
CD of the Year Finding Forever Won
Best Hip Hop Video "The People" Nominated
Best Live Performance Nominated
MVP Of The Year Nominated
Black Reel Awards 2003 Best Film Song "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Won
Grammy Awards 2001 Best Rap Solo Performance "The Light" Nominated
2003 Best Song Written for a Motion Picture/Television Movie "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
Best R&B Song "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Won
Best Urban/Alternative Performance "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
2006 Best Rap/Sung Collaboration "They Say" Nominated
Best Rap Album Be Nominated
Best Rap Solo Performance Testify Nominated
Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group "The Corner" Nominated
2008 Best Rap Performance by Duo or Group "Southside" Won
Best Rap Album Finding Forever Nominated
Best Rap Solo Performance "The People" Nominated
Image Awards 2006 Outstanding Duo or Group "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
Outstanding Song "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
Outstanding Music Video "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)" Nominated
Outstanding Music Video "Testify" Nominated
Outstanding Male Artist n/a Nominated
MTV Video Music Awards 2001 Best Hip-Hop Video "Geto Heaven Remix T.S.O.I. (The Sound of Illadelph)" Nominated
2003 MTV2 Award "Come Close" Nominated
2005 Best Hip-Hop Video "Go" Nominated
2006 Best Hip-Hop Video "Testify" Nominated
Soul Train Awards 2006 Best R&B/Soul Single by a Duo or Group "Supastar" Nominated
Best Music Video "Testify" Nominated
Vibe Awards 2005 Reelest Video "The Corner" Nominated
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