died on March 9th 1997 and this a little
tribute to the man that brought Hip Hop/
Rap back to the East. He may not be the greatest
but he is one of the games most influential
because of when and how he came out.
We first heard him on Super Cat's "Dolly My Baby
(remix)", Mary J. Blige's "Real Love (remix)" and
his own cut off the Who's Da Man soundtrack "Party
He was Sean Combs first signed artist on Bad Boy
Records and his most successful. The duo took the
game by storm.
He jumpstarted the careers of Lil' Kim, P-Diddy,
the rapper, Total, Mase, The Lox and many others
including Jay Z. It just seemed like he was what
a lot of MC's want to be now: able to remain in
the middle when it comes to hard lyrics and the
ability to play it hard or flashy.
Both of his albums made while he was living Ready
To Die and Life After Death were classic and opened
the doors for exciting music and deadly collaborations.
Biggie came on the rap scene when it was gaining
roots in the West and only a few people were doing
things in the East.
Remember Snoop Doggy Dogg's Doggystyle?
Dr. Dre's The Chronic?
Ice Cube's The Predator?
These were the sounds that were dominating the
rap scene especially with the growing popularity
of MTV, BET and The Box. Rap was being brought
to the forefront but it was more about riding in
the Caddies with the highs and lows and getting
high. And while nothing was wrong about it you
knew something was missing in the game.
The music of rap was missing people like Rakim,
KRS One, Run DMC and Public Enemy who were coming
to the end of their initial hype. People were looking
for someone else and B.I.G. along with others (like
Nas) came and filled the bill bringing respectability
worldwide commercially and in the streets back
to the east in 1994.
Biggie was a great personality because he went
against trends and created others. He told people: "heartthrob
never black and ugly as ever1" showing he knew
his limits but wouldn't stop doing him.
How many artists tried to rhyme fast after B.I.G.
did it with bone Thugs N Harmony?
How many started talking about the ice and designer
Who had Too Short on a cut first!
In fact Big could be blamed for the materialistic
rush of Hip Hop but give him credit for being the
first if not the most popular! He also knew that
the great equalizer to looks is good game and gear.
He was a great combo of skills and versatility.
He did party songs but they weren't syrupy like
today's cuts for the radio and he still kept it
street on his albums. He talked about the guns
and drugs but also thought about his life on songs
like Ready To Die and Sky's The Limit. You can
hear his lines in a lot of today's hottest rappers.
I think because of his looks it would be hard to
get to flashy and that's what made Biggie stay
closer to the ground. He was confident yet insecure
in some areas and that endeared him to many.
While he wasn't a freestyle fanatic he did more
with a little of time than most do with a whole
book of rhymes.
He wrongly (though unintentionally) along with
Tupac Shakur had people beefing over which coast
was the best. But yet that's what type of influence
Many may choose to forget but the big boy did his
thing and when you think of what is going on in
the current game think of B.I.G. and how much people
should thank him for paving the way. And if you
are too young to remember his lyrics watch out
because they are coming out you favorites mouth.
He died on March 9th 1997 (my senior year of high
school) and this is just a little tribute. He may
not be the greatest but he is one of the games
most influential because of when and how he came
out. Be sure to check out the Best Of Big for some
cuts to check out!
Any questions, comments, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.