Thursday, March 9, 2017

Biggie Smalls is Tha' Illest

Today marks 20 years since Biggie’s death

On March 9, 1997, music mourned the passing of hip-hop icon The Notorious B.I.G. after he was fatally shot in Los Angeles. His impeccable flare and innate wordplay captivated listeners on tracks like "Juicy," "One More Chance," and "Big Poppa." Despite having his career curtailed at the age of 24, his magnum opuses, 1994's Ready to Die and 1997's double-album Life After Death, are still revered the culture twenty years later.
In hopes of maintaining his legacy, FOX 5 news reporter and host of Hot 97'sStreet Soldiers, Lisa Evers, created a TV special to celebrate Biggie's illustrious career. Evers tapped two of Wallace's close friends in Junior M.A.F.I.A.'s Lil Cease and Hot 97's DJ Enuff, Biggie's tour DJ, to ruminate on their days with the late rapper. 

Shaquille O’Neal was with The Notorious B.I.G. just hours before he died back on March 9, 1997. According to Shaq’s 2011 book, Shaq Uncut: My Story, the NBA great was with Biggie at a tattoo parlor that day. And he even planned on attending a party sponsored by Vibe magazine with Biggie that night before he fell asleep while he was waiting for his ride and ultimately missed the party. Shaq found out Biggie died when his mother paged him early the next morning to check on him.

Image result for biggie"I don’t say I could’ve prevented it," Shaq said. "I was just saying…if I was out there by the car, would they still have fired? That’s the only thing I would say to myself. I don’t wanna make it seem like I could’ve saved him. I don’t want to make it seem like if I was there, the shooters wouldn’t have shot. If I was there by the truck, after we all left and I’m dapping him up, would they still have shot?"

The Notorious B.I.G. videos


The following is excerpted from Original Gangstas: The Untold Story of Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, and the Birth of West Coast Rap by Ben Westhoff, forthcoming from Hachette Book Group

Biggie and other young rappers assembled in recording studios or hotel rooms to hear Tupac lecture about how to make it in the game. "'Pac could get up and get to teaching," said EDI Mean. "Everyone was transfixed on this dynamic individual, and soaking up all the information we could soak up." But Tupac devoted special attention to Biggie, grooming him and letting him perform at his concerts. Biggie even told him he'd like to be a part of another of his affiliated groups, called Thug Life. "I trained the nigga, he used to be under me like my lieutenant," Tupac said.
Tupac claimed to have directly influenced Biggie's style. "I used to tell the nigga, 'If you want to make your money, you have to rap for the bitches. Do not rap for the niggas,' " he said. "The bitches will buy your records, and the niggas want what the bitches want." As proof that Biggie had heeded his advice, Tupac cited the difference between his early track, the aggressive "Party and Bullshit," and softer songs from his debut Ready to Die like "Big Poppa," which appealed more to the ladies: "Soon as he buy that wine, I just creep up from behind / And ask what your interests are, who you be with?"
But before Ready to Die came out, Biggie worried he could miss his shot, considering that the new label he was signed to, Bad Boy—owned by his manager Sean "Puffy" Combs—hadn't taken off yet. Things weren't happening for him quickly enough, he complained. He asked Tupac to take over as his manager, in hopes Tupac could advance his music and film career as rapidly as he'd done his own. "Biggie looked like he was wearing the same pair of Timberlands for a year, [while] 'Pac was staying at the Waldorf‑Astoria and buying Rolexes and dating Madonna,"

Born as Christopher Wallace on May 21, 1972, in Brooklyn, New York, Biggie Smalls, also known as Notorious B.I.G.,in Brooklyn, New York, in the neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant. Biggie experienced a rough childhood—at an early age, he was surrounded by drug addicts and dealers. As a result, by his early teens, Biggie had joined the life that was all around him. "Hustlers were my heroes," he once said. "Everything happened on the strip I grew up in. It didn't matter where you went, it was all in your face."

At the age of 17, Biggie was arrested for selling crack, and spent nine months in a North Carolina prison before making bail. As he navigated his young, uncertain life, Biggie started making music. He hung around a crew called the "Old Gold Brothers," and began experimenting on his own. Around his neighborhood, Biggie Smalls, as he called himself then, began building a reputation as a musician. After a tape of his landed in the hands of Mister Cee, a well-known DJ, Smalls was featured in the hip-hop publication,The Source.

The article was enough to catch the attention of Sean "Puffy" Combs, a young producer at Uptown Entertainment, a New York-based label specializing in hip-hop and rhythm and blues. When Combs split from Uptown to start his own label, Bad Boy Entertainment, he brought Smalls with him.
Image result for biggie
Immediately, The Notorious B.I.G., as he now called himself, got to work, appearing on a 1993 remix of Mary J. Blige's single, "Real Love," and followed it up with a second Blige remix, "What's the 411?" His debut as a solo artist came with the single, "Party and Bullshit," on the soundtrack to the film, Who's the Man? (1993).
In 1994, The Notorious B.I.G. released his debut album, Ready to Die, which told the story of his life, from drug dealer to rapper. Backed with hits like "Juicy" and "Big Poppa," the record went platinum and the young hip-hop artist became a full-fledged star. That same year, The Source named the rapper "Best New Artist," "Best Live Performer" and "Lyricist of the Year."
As his star power increased, Biggie did his best to share his prestige. He backed the work of several rappers that he'd originally performed with while starting out in Brooklyn, and took to the studio in support of other artists on Sean "Puffy" Combs's label. He also teamed up with such stars as Michael Jackson and R. Kelly. By the close of 1995, Biggie was one of music's best-selling and most sought after performers.

Troubled Times

However, success and wealth hardly brought peace to Biggie's life. In the immediate aftermath of Ready to Die's popularity, the rapper found himself in constant fear. In 1994, he told The New York Times that he was disliked for having more money, which came with his fame. The large rapper—at 6 feet and three inches, and tipping the scales at nearly 400 pounds—said that he jumped whenever the door to his apartment building opened, fearing that someone might want to hurt him.
Biggie's fear led to anxiety, which led to spurts of aggression. In May 1995, he allegedly beat up a man after they got into a dispute over a canceled performance. Later, he took a baseball bat to a group of autograph seekers. His most famous battles, however, occurred with others in the hip-hop industry, most notably with Tupac Shakur, Marion "Suge" Knight and Death Row Records. The rivalry turned into an East Coast-West Coast feud (with Combs and Biggie representing the East), and the tension escalated in 1994, when Shakur and a member of the Wu-Tang Clan were shot and robbed. The two men survived and Shakur came out blazing, accusing Biggie and Combs of orchestrating the attack. Both vehemently denied the accusation.
Shakur added fuel to the flames with a pointed slam on the East Coast rap world in the single, "Hit 'Em Up," in which he claimed to have slept with Biggie's wife, Faith Evans. In September 1996, East Coast-West Coast battle heated up even further, when Shakur was murdered in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas. Rumors of Biggie's involvement immediately began to make the rounds, and when the rapper was one of the few hip-hop artists not to make an appearance at an anti-violence summit that was held in Harlem a few weeks later, the finger-pointing intensified.
Image result for biggie
Shakur's death amplified Biggie's fears about his own life, and his concern was tragically validated on March 9, 1997. Biggie, who had just come out of a party celebrating the 11th Annual Soul Train Music Awards, was sitting in an SUV when another vehicle pulled up to his car, opened fire and killed him. Biggie was only 24 years old at the time.
For many fans, the murder was viewed as retaliation for Shakur's murder. Biggie's death shook the music world, prompting fears that the hip-hop world might erupt into a full-fledged war, ending numerous other lives. That didn't happen, fortunately, but Biggie's friends, family and fans never received any answers regarding his death. Despite years of speculation regarding the identity of the gunman, Biggie's case was never solved. Biggie's family has been outspoken about its disappointment with the handling of the case, going as far as accusing the Los Angeles Police Department of employing rogue officers who were involved in the murder.
Biggie's death came just as the rapper was about to put out his second album,Life After Death. In the wake of Biggie's killing, the record was a giant hit, selling nearly 700,000 copies in its first week. Two years later, Born Again, an album of unreleased material from Biggie, was released. A third album of extra material, Duets: The Final Chapter, was released in 2005.
Today, Biggie is still one of the music industry's most admired hip-hop artists. Several musicians have paid tribute to Biggie by mentioning him in their songs, and his musical style has been emulated by countless up-and-coming artists. Undoubtedly, Biggie's talent as a writer and rapper will continue to be acknowledged for decades to come.Image result for biggie

Hot 97 Presents: B.I.G. 20 Years

Celebrating Hip Hop legend & HOT 97 family member for life, Biggie Smalls, 20 

years after his passing.


After 20 years, the Mafia-style murder of Biggie Smalls remains one of the most baffling mysteries in rap history.
The Brooklyn-born hip-hop legend was shot dead by a bow-tied assassin March 9, 1997, while sitting in a green Chevy Suburban parked on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles.
He was struck with four GECO bullets — rare, metal-piercing 9mm ammo manufactured in Europe and sold only in certain California and New Jersey shops.

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Brooklyn Supermarket Honoring The Notorious B.I.G. With Limited Edition Grocery Bags

The Notorious B.I.G. tragically lost his life March 9, 1997, but his legacy lives on not only through his music, but in many aspects of culture that he touched. Even grocery stores.

As a child, Christopher Wallace bagged groceries at Brooklyn’s Met Food Supermarket and on the 20th anniversary of his passing, the store is paying tribute to the rap legend with special edition paper bags.


The Biggie Bags are the creation of Jed Heuer and his wife, Jennifer, who have lived in the area since 2000. There are 100 special edition bags at Key Food, the store that now stands where Met Food was at 991 Fulton Street, that are available for purchase on a first come, first served basis.

“This project is about paying respect to a legendary artist and sharing a piece of neighborhood history.”

Biggie was fatally shot 20 years ago in Los Angeles after attending a party. He died an hour later and the murder is still unsolved.

Remy Ma Ends Nicki Minaj Beef to Focus On Empowering Women

The internet undoubtedly had the time of its life picking apart each slanderous bar on Remy Ma’s “SHETHER,” but for the song’s creator, there is some disappointment in the hype of the track’s aftermath.

In a Facebook Live session with Buzzfeed’s Another Round Podcast, Remy explained why she’s not for the tearing down of other women, despite what went down between herself and Nicki Minaj.

She did clarify that if you rub her the wrong way, likely in the case of the Queens rapper, she’s ready to take aim.

“I do not condone or recommend the tearing down of another female,” Remy Ma said. “That’s not what I do. Anybody that knows me knows that I embrace females. I always want to do some girl-oriented thing. I think we work so much better when we work together and when we help each other. I just don’t, especially when I know someone who’s come from somewhere like I’ve come from, when you come from the bottom and you’ve actually managed to make something of yourself, it just makes me happy. It just makes me all mushy inside. However, in the event that you piss me off and we become archenemies, run for cover.”

Later in the interview, the Bronx wordsmith did fess up to not being “particularly proud” of “SHETHER.” She also explained that she and Nicki could have made an equally powerful impact doing a collaboration.

“It just bothers me that this record that I put out where it’s literally picking apart a female went so viral, and every media outlet wants to talk about it and pick it up. I feel like we could’ve done the same thing working together. I would’ve liked it so much better that way. … I don’t regret [“SHETHER”], but I’m not particularly proud of it,” she said. ” I just think it’s crazy the way people celebrate women attacking each other as opposed to working together.”

While admitting that she was “on high alert” in the week after dropping “SHETHER,” Remy is not among those waiting for Nicki’s response (which is probably not coming anyway).
“It’s over now,” she said. “If she wants to say something then cool, but I said what I had to say and that’s really it.”

El Chapo Movie in the Works at Sony

The studio is set to pick up the rights to the upcoming book 'Hunting El Chapo: The Thrilling Inside Story of the American Lawman Who Captures the World’s Most-Wanted Drug Lord.'

As he was in real life, Mexican drug lord El Chapo is proving to be a wanted man.
Sony is picking up the rights to Hunting El Chapo: The Thrilling Inside Story of the American Lawman Who Captures the World’s Most-Wanted Drug Lord, an upcoming book by Cole Merrell and Douglas Century.
3 Arts Entertainment will produce the adaptation.
Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán is the Sinoloa drug cartel boss who, in addition to being one of the most powerful crime lords of all time, had a knack for escaping his prisons. Three times he made headlines with his escapes, prompting massive manhunts. He was last recaptured in 2016 and extradited to the U.S. in January.
The project will compete with Fox’s thriller, The Cartel, which adapted Don Winslow's novel that was a fictional take on El Chapo, with Ridley Scott attached to helm.
Sony is hoping to bag a similarly big-name director, with Michael Bay at the top of the studio’s list of most wanted.  
Hunting El Chapo is due to hit shelves Oct. 17.

Diddy to Debut 'Can't Stop, Won't Stop: The Bad Boy Story' Documentary at Tribeca Film Festival

Continuing the 20th-anniversary celebration of Bad Boy Entertainment, music mogul Diddy will debut his forthcoming documentary Can't Stop, Won't Stop: The Bad Boy Story at this year's Tribeca Film Festival in New York.
“I am blessed to be introducing our film at the Tribeca Film Festival," Diddy said in a statement sent toBillboard. "Tribeca brings the biggest names in entertainment and culture together with visionaries from across industries to celebrate the power of storytelling. There is no better place to share the story behind the Bad Boy movement and this unprecedented musical event."
The documentary, a Live Nation Production directed by Daniel Kaufman, will take a behind-the-scenes look at the prolific label's legacy and offer an in-depth look at the two-night anniversary extravaganza that took place last May at Brooklyn's Barclays Center in honor of the late rap great, The Notorious B.I.G.
The film will explore Bad Boy Entertainment's beginnings in Harlem and Brooklyn, its influence on pop culture, fashion and music, and delve into the tragic murder of Biggie Smalls.
The cameras will also trail Diddy as he tries to wrangle the Bad Boy Family -- including Lil' Kim, Mase, Faith Evans, Mario Winans and 112, among others -- for the pair of sold-out shows within a three-week rehearsal period. 

"Bonnie & Clyde" Couple Charged With Murder After Self-Snitching On Facebook Live

It seems police have access to the Internet after all.

A couple has been arrested for the murder of a 19-year-old man in Oak Cliff, TX last week. According to Dallas News, Dallas police obtained footage of the pair incriminating themselves while broadcasting via Facebook Live. In the recording, which you can see below, the couple shows off firearms and ammunition, and they allude to having recently shot someone. 

The couple, 17-year-old Hakeem Leprince Griffin-White and 27-year-old Ashely Ann Coleman, were arrested on Sunday. They have each been charged with one count of murder. Coleman is being held on $500,000 bail, and police said Griffin-White is being held for the same amount, though jail records list his bail at $200,000. 
They have each been charged for the murder of Drekeiston Alex, who was shot in the middle of the street on Thursday afternoon. He attempted to run away but collapsed soon after he was shot. He was taken to Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas, where he was pronounced dead. 
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