The Neptunes are an American production duo, composed of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo, who are credited with contributing the sound for many successful hip hop, R&B and pop artists in the late-1990s and 2000s. The Neptunes' sound is a distinctive brand of off-kilter, stripped-down electronic funk with sounds from Middle Eastern and Asian music including percussion and woodwind. Pharrell sings and (later) raps on records and appears in videos, unlike his production partner Chad, and sometimes vocal partner Shay Haley, who tends to stay behind the scenes.
Before gaining success and forming The Neptunes, Williams and Hugo along with local producer Timbaland and rapper Magoo formed a group "Surrounded by Idiots" in the late '90s, but disbanded before even recording together. Later, The Neptunes emerged and Timbaland & Magoo emerged as a hip hop duo, occasionally collaborating.
The Neptunes are estimated to have a net worth of $155 million and are considered one of the most successful producers in music history, noted by twenty-four Billboard Hot 100 top 10 hits during the late 1990s and 2000s. In 2009 Billboard ranked The Neptunes No. 1 on their list of Top 10 producers of the decade. Readers of Vibe Magazine named The Neptunes as the 3rd greatest hip-hop producers of all time behind Dr. Dre and DJ Premier.