Hard Core is the debut studio album by American rapper Lil’ Kim. It was released on the Atlantic subsidiary Big Beat Records on November 12, 1996 in the United States. The album was notable for its overt sexual tone and Kim’s lyrical delivery, which was praised by music critics soon after its release.[1]

The album debut at number eleven on the U.S. Billboard 200 and number one on Billboard‘s Top R&B Albums, and reached the top ten of the Canadian Albums Chart. In the United States, Hard Core was certified double platinum by the RIAA and sold more than 3 million copies sold worldwide. Hard Core is one of the few female hip hop albums to be considered a classic.