TuPac Shakur – Thug Poet’s Society
Those were the opening lines to the late great B.I.Gs Kick Down the Door off his last album: Life After Death. If those lines were taken now and tweaked to describe 2Pacs influence on the rap game seven years after his death those lines would be something like this:
/Pac, your influence on the game goes strong on and on / As willies, rappers, and thugs continue to bite your songs/
Yep, its seven years this month now that Pacs life was snuffed away in a senseless shooting in the Sin City aka Las Vegas. But if you look at the rap game right now its almost like 2Pac never left because so many clones have taken turns at trying to take TuPacs style for their own or trying to claim that theyre the legitimate torchbearers and heirs carrying on TuPacs message. Whether its Suge Knight sounding off on all the fake brothers claiming they ride for Pac, Jay-Z and Toni Braxton trading barbs over who gets first dibs on the beat from Pacs Me and my girlfriend, Nas imposing himself on Pacs image for his Got Yourself A video and even Eminem jumping into the foray by calling himself the White Pac and using the Hail Mary beat for a
Ja Rule dis, it is very evident that TuPacs influence is very much alive.
At this point, allow me to digress a bit to a recent piece of TuPac related press that involves none other than the self-betrothed Grand Champion himself, DMX. When the X-Man first broke through the game in 98 with his high octane single Where my Dogs At, his reputation for wearing his unstable emotions on his sleeve, his bare-chested performances, and of course his tendency to rock a bandanna over his bald dome naturally brought on numerous comparisons to Pac. And when these comparisons were being bandied about, all DMX did was bathe in the hype created by it.
Forward a couple of years later to a DMX article in the most recent issue of XXL. In the piece, the dog distances himself completely from Pac, and claims that he never really listened to Pacs music coming up, and has always been X and never a Pac clone. Now, thats all fine and good, but come on Earl; how come when you were first getting on in the game, you soaked up all the praises and labels handed to you about being the new Pac, and now, after a couple of platinum albums, youre saying you never really checked for Pac? Come on man, thats not real.
Okay moving on from the DMX issue and getting back to Pacs legendary status in the rap game, here are a just a few reasons why Pacs name isnt going to fade away anytime soon:
1) A new clothing line called Makaveli from TuPacs estate that pulls its influence from TuPacs life and poetry is hitting better department stores near you just in time for Christmas. So now, youll be finally able to buy some authentic TuPac merchandise and have it go directly to TuPacs estate and not have some crusty-ass bootlegger bagging all the profits.
2) Hollywood is swooping in to take a slice of the Tupac brand as well. Sylvester Stallone, the semi-washed up star of the Rocky series is writing, directing, and starring in a movie called Rampart Scandal about the unsolved murders of TuPac and Biggie. It is slated for release sometime next year. If youre thinking right now Why the fuck is Stallone of all people doing a story on two fallen rap titans? Dont worry; everyone else is thinking that same exact thought too.
3) Daz Dillinger, the rowdy, irreverent half of the DPG duo claims that he has DATS of never-before-heard music with TuPac that hes willing to sell to the highest bidder. So you can rest assured, some new Pac music should be hitting your ear drums in the very near future.
The fact of the issue is that TuPac was definitely one of the greatest rappers, and undoubtedly the most complete MC to ever pick up the mic device. And as it goes with all great revolutionaries and artists, death only seems to fan the flames of their already well-stoked popularity. Especially in Pacs case, with the rap game still firmly entrenched in the thug aesthetic Tupac glorified, his dead poets society looks to only get larger and larger. Its seven years now since his violent death, and Im willing to bet on the non-existent millions in my bank account that another seven years from now, the Tupac name and brand will be just as hot as it is today
R.I.P. Tupac save a brother a place in the Thugz Mansion Peace