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Class of 2006 Week

10 Unforgettable Debut Albums from 2006

Before dropping world-dominating records like 'Bangerz,' 'Nothing Was the Same' and '1989,' these folks were just getting their start a decade ago

1 / 10

January 23: Arctic Monkeys, 'Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not'

The quartet of British 20-year-olds gave their late '05 single "I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor" a home on this full-length, which became the fastest-selling debut LP in the history of the United Kingdom.

2 / 10

February 14: Drake, 'Room for Improvement'

On Valentine's Day '06, in the middle of an eight-year stretch on Degrassi: The Next GenerationAubrey Drake Graham made his music presence known with a DJ Smallz–hosted mixtape featuring Boi-1da beats and at least a few Jay Z–indebted flows. Followed by Comeback Season, and later the official debut LP Thank Me LaterRoom for Improvement was the first of only two releases that wouldn't be widely listened to by the whole world right away. The opening is priceless:

"Yo, what's going on, this is Drake
And I'mma let you know what you about to witness
This right here is a Drake and DJ Smallz collaboration
So I'm from Canada, my man's from down South
Ya understand, the number one DJ in the South to be exact
You heard that at the VMAs, you heard that wherever he goes
My man Smalls is out there, down south
Same time, reppin' for Toronto, Canada
Ya know what I mean?
So this right here, what you listening to right now, is the official 
Southern Smoke Special Edition
I call it the Room For Improvement mixtape, 'cause I'm not perfect
And I bet neither are you if you listening"

3 / 10

February 24, Corinne Bailey Rae, 'Corinne Bailey Rae'

The British singer-songwriter's first go-round gave us wonderful tunes like "Put Your Records On" and "Like a Star." She was nominated for Best New Artist at the 2007 GRAMMYS alongside Chris BrownCarrie Underwood, Imogen Heap and James Blunt (Underwood won). Since the self-titled, Bailey Rae has released just one album, 2010's The Sea.

4 / 10

July 13: Lily Allen, 'Alright, Still'

The British multi-hyphenate built her base on MySpace before dropping her Mark Ronson– and Greg Kurstin–assisted Alright, Still in the summer of '06.

5 / 10

July 25: Pharrell, 'In My Mind'

Pharrell dropped his first song as just Pharrell in the summer of 2003, with Jay Z. "Frontin'" appeared on Clones, a Neptunes-presented compilation LP. Three years later, Skateboard P came out with In My Mind and a 21-song mixtape prequel hosted by DJ Drama. He would wait eight years before his next solo LP, Girl, featuring the smash hit "Happy."

6 / 10

August 8: Cassie, 'Cassie'

The one (and so far only) record by Cassie dropped a few weeks before her 19th birthday. Though the official follow-up is still yet to come, RockaByeBaby, a mixtape featuring Wiz KhalifaRick RossPusha T and more, arrived through Bad Boy Records in 2013.

7 / 10

September 19: Lupe Fiasco, 'Food & Liquor'

The Chicago wordsmith's grand debut and hip hop landmark still might be his best work; it was also accompanied in '06 by the three Fahrenheit 1/15 mixtapes, subtitled The Truth Is Among Us, Revenge of the Nerds and A Rhyming Ape.

8 / 10

October 24: Taylor Swift, 'Taylor Swift'

T-Swift hit the scene as a 16-year-old country strummer name-checking Tim McGraw; she debuted at No. 19 on the Billboard 200 with 40,000 albums sold. Six years later, the world's-biggest-artist-to-be would cross the bridge into the pop world with Red (and, of course, 1989).

9 / 10

October 24: Miley Cyrus, 'Hannah Montana'

Along with Dexter, The Hills and Friday Night Lights, Hannah Montana made its debut a whole decade ago. With it came what can be considered the Miley Cyrus album, simply titled Hannah Montana. It's a compilation of songs from the show, most performed by an in-character Cyrus, although four of its 13 tracks belong to other artists. Eight months later, the double album Hannah Montana 2: Meet Miley Cyrus would be classified as Miley's first official release under her own name.

10 / 10

October 30: Bring Me the Horizon, 'Count Your Blessings'

For some reason, BMTH's monster debut, with metalcore masterpieces like "Pray for Plagues" and "Black & Blue," didn't hit the U.S. till the summer of '07. But the U.K. release was the start of a super-successful career; That's the Spirit, the band's excellent fifth record, dropped in September 2015.

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NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 06:  Singer Mariah Carey flips the switch at the Empire State Building's Symbolic Lighting Ceremony t

Dec. 7: Mariah Lights Up NYC

The holiday season is upon us and no one else is more excited than the Queen of Christmas herself, Mariah Carey. After kicking of her annual "All I Want For Christmas Is You" concert series at the Beacon Theatre the night before, Mimi continued spreading her holiday cheer and lit up the Empire State Building in celebration of their new holiday light show.

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