There ain't a whole lot that can be said here... One year ago around 5:30 am.. I remember getting a call from my buddies in LA telling me that Biggie had been shot and killed at the Soul Train Music Awards.... An eerie feeling went through me... I kept wondering if this was some sort of revenge for the killing of 2Pac..|
I remember being among the first to go on our airwaves with that news...[Larry Jackson and Gill Alexander were the first to bring the bad news..] and having to hold a 2 hour talk show.. I remember some of the hostile yet gleeful calls we got from people who thought it was great that Biggie finally got done in... A year ago around this time.. 4 days before he passed.. I remember sitting in the studio as Biggie did his last radio interview.. He seemed so calm and so focused.. He talked about wanting to be with his kids.. and he talked about how he wanted to get closer with God... I remember how everyone could feel Biggie as he spoke that day... He was a man who had obviously endured some rough times over that past year and was finally coming to a place where he could see light at the end of the tunnel..
The oddest thing I recall about Biggie's last visit to our radio station was one of our djs Franzen asking how Biggie was doing in LA.. Biggie said he was having a good time and that people seemed to be showing him a lot of love... Franzen seemed a bit concerned and told him not to be fooled by laid back ways of LA... Biggie was told to be careful....It was one friend to another expressing genuine concern... Biggie's death was a shocker... With him and 2Pac gone it met the end of an era... Rap missed an opportunity to excercise it's full potential....
So now that one year has passed.. the question that one must ask is... Has Hip Hop progressed or the past year? Have we learned our lessons...? I know that shortly after the Nation Of Islam held their historic summit in Chicago and called for an end to all bi-coastal beefs... To a large degree that has taken place... However, hip hop still has a long ways to go... What has happened is that hip hop has seemingly stopped being a movement.. People are so focused on either making money or trying to be more real or more underground then the next man that we've stopped reaching for new heights... Hip Hop used to be a catalyst for social interaction... By that I mean it was the vehichle in which issues effecting our lives were brought to the forefront...
Nowadays hip hop seems so disjointed.. Within the music industry...hip hop djseven on the college level have been co-opted by major record labels.. So instead of being a constant pulse to the community... Instead of being a catalyst for debate and dialogue or a beacon for social change our co-opted brethren are trying to figure out who to get close to so they get a free trip to the next music convention.. There isn't any more passion... as hip hop djs jockey for label favors...
On the artist side... the pride has seemingly gone... Very few are taking their work seriously... By that I mean.. very few are trying to go out and make hip hop fun again.. After Biggie's death we've seen all sorts of ill behavior from some of hip hop's biggest stars.. We've had artist get arrested, kicked off tours, not show up for concerts, not grant interviews... and basically act like they got a death wish for themselves..or at the very least act like they have a timer for self destruction...
If we ain't pimpin', mackin' and being the ultimate playa..or Big Willie... we're straining to be that ultimate pure, underground, keep it real... Yo! I'm true hip hop person. The sad part is is that these underground kids have contaminated hip hop just as much as their 'I wanna be a thug counterparts'..because very few have gone out and tried to directly connect with that community from which the music is created...Very few have gone back and tried to make a difference... How do I know? 'cause it's showing up in the music...or lack of it... A whole lot of us are relying upon videos and street teams and fancy marketing planes... very few are going door to door for real...
Anyway.. Biggie died a year ago and you still have folks disuniting istead coming together.. You still have kids yelling eastside westside..and you still have kids who are overlooking the fact that his kids will grow up without their daddy..... If you really wanna pay homage to Biggie go out and help uplift your community.. Go out and help make a change so there are no more tragic deaths like Biggies...
Biggie was the bomb of rap. He had alot going for him and his memories should be kept alive like with so many others that have past away. He deserves it. He gave a gift to us which was his music and his insperation and we all need to give him the same and keep his pirit alive through creating more C.D.'s of unreleased songs loke 2Pac's mother did. Puffy has done a great job so far others just need to pitch in a little more and make it happen big for Biggie. Biggie...." We'll Always Love Big Poppa!"..........R.I.P. and I'll see you when I get there.
I truly enjoyed Biggie's music. However, I was not a fan. On March 9, 1997, I learned of Biggie's passing at 3pm that afternoon, via CNN Headline News. Needless to say, I was stunned. And like many others, the first thought that crossed my mind was that perhaps this was retaliation for Tupac's murder.
That thought quickly left my mind. The more I have thought about this tragedy in the past year, the more it makes absolutely no sense at all to me. The only thing that is certain is that, as you stated, two more Afrikan children are now fatherless. The saddest part is, the "authorities" (whatever that term is supposed to mean) have done nothing to arrest the person or persons who committed this heinous crime.
No matter what anyone else says, I still feel (very strongly) that there is a connection between the murders of Tupac, Yakki and Biggie. It may come off as far-fetched, but since no one really knows what the motivations were, all possibilities should be left open.
All murders were definitely pre-meditated. They did not just occur out of the blue. Those murders were carefully planned out; they were just orchestrated in a manner that suggested that they were random. I suppose the cops think people are stupid. How in the world could federal agents have been part of those entourages (we don't know who was actually tracking Yakki in NJ either...) and not have seen what occurred -- unless they had an idea of what was about to take place.
Let me back up for a minute. The Feds were tracking Bad Boy and Death Row. Why in the world would they not track down the perpetrators on the spot? It seems to me (and many others) that they allowed to make a clean escape.
I think I need to stop right here. All I can say is that Tupac is truly missed...I loved that brotha
Is it over? I certainly pray that it is. However, if most of my speculation rings true, any person in the public eye who has strong opinions or who is able to wield a major influence upon urban and rural youth alike, well, I suppose they had better watch out. It has become obvious that when people begin to make changes for the betterment of themselves and their families, they are silenced.
Oh well, Davey...this is the price we pay for surviving in Amerikkka.
I agree to everything you've said. It's the ole' bandwagon thing. I'm a true hip hop head, an ole' one at that(36). I remember the tru mc's like Rakim, Big Daddy Kane etc. Those fellows paid strict attention to lyrics.
This brings me to Biggie. To me Biggie shit was real, even though it was from a hustlers perspective. Granted it was boosting the Big Willie-ism, but it was real in his relm. You can feel an artist and you can tell the realism he projects in his music. Nothing against 2pac, but I just seems to have felt Biggie more than him. There is still luv for the IMORTAL ONE - 2PAC but it took a while for me to feel him. Even though I'm an old head, I'm one that understands the tru meaning of the term "CAN YOU FEEL ME".
Lately when I write and to me it not really about rhyming per sa but saying something I make sure you actually feel me. There is only one artist out there now that I can feel and that's MASTER P. You see I'm older than P but I feel him for several reasons: I've seen NEW ORLEANS transform and the economic is not letting young heads be young heads and last been born and raised there. Again I thank Biggie for his lyrical guideance. Sorry about the passing of both 2pac and Biggie. But I was really about to ignore the game if it wasn't for the BIG ONE - RIP
Hello Davey D,
Just to remember the warmth and understanding of Biggie brings a smile to my face. I can say, I was one of several individuals to be with him during the last 2 hours of his life. I remember bringing my sister Jameika to the Vibe Party at the Petersen Automotive Museum, that night. This was her very first industry function and she was amazed!
The music, drinks, girls & guys were just flowin'. Hundred thousand dollar cars were parked as mere props on every floor throughout the party. As the party goers begin to settle in, Biggie strolls in with his cane and Bad Boy entourage. He settles into a chair like a king on his throne. Since, I was just a table away from Biggie, I noticed all the activity and celebration at his locale.
Biggie, Puffy, Lil Ceas, Russell Simmons and several others sipped Crystal Champagne as the girls surrounded their table for pictures and autographs. As the minutes ticked away, I asked my sister if she would like to meet Biggie? Since, I had recently produced a "Straight From The Streets" Fox News feature story on him, he had displayed so much love for me and it showed! Her answer was, yes of course. We arrived at the table, Biggie and I mutually acknowledged each other. She met him and joked for a moment as we planned on getting together the next day to view my film "Straight From The Streets" and work out the details for Biggie to record a song for my soundtrack.
Then that dreaded telephone call from my cousin, Jeff. He told me that Biggie had been shot after he had left the party. I called my colleagues at Fox and NBC News and confirmed the reports. For me, Biggie was an understanding and caring brother, that was down for making a difference in life. Till this day my lil sis still carries a picture of her and Biggie, taken at the party that evening in her wallet all the time. Lastly, I just hope that everyone that reads this story will appreciate everyday that they live and remember tomorrow is not guaranteed. Just be thankful for today and hope for a tomorrow!
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