Who signed Christopher Wallace (Biggie Smalls / Notorious B.I.G) to his first record deal?
Answer: Sean Combs
"By the time he was 15, Wallace (Biggie Smalls) was selling crack in Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood.
He gave up drug dealing for rap, however, and recorded homemade demos in his basement and on the streets of Brooklyn.
One of these found its way to Uptown Records A&R chief Sean Combs, who, after leaving Uptown to start his own Bad Boy Entertainment label, signed Biggie Smalls. The Notorious B.I.G. helped Bad Boy on its way to becoming one of the most successful rap and R&B labels of the '90s when Ready to Die, released in September 1994, went to #3 on the R&B album chart and spawned several hits.
Here are a few: "Juicy" (#27 pop, #14 R&B, 1994), "Big Poppa" (#6 pop, #4 R&B, 1995), and "One More Chance/Stay With Me" (#2 pop, #1 R&B, 1995) among them. The album itself was also a crossover success, climbing to #15." - Rolling Stone