Who hurr is INTO 2Pac?

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  • GamleOleGamleOle 508 Posts
    JATX said:
    Since he is such a big icon, it just strikes me that the masses don’t have a better understanding of him,


    Could you elaborate on that? I agree Pac is held in high regard by a lot of people. Took a political science class as an elective last semester and the prof claimed over and over that if Pac were alive he'd be a congressman or senator by now. I wanted to disagree until I remembered The Terminator was elected out west, and W got reelected a bunch of times.

    Speaking on Pac's music, I like a handful of his songs, but not for any message involved. I had the "If My Homies Call" cassingle in the 8th grade and remembered Pac, like a lot here, as a dancer for Digital Underground.

    Yes, but I will try to make it as brief as I can because this could easily turn into a very long reply. The fact that some people are unsure or confused about what 2pac was about is completely understandable because there doesn’t seem to be that one good book, article or interview that captures it well. I also think that a lot of those people who think they understand him perfectly often miss out on important details. So it may seem that he was complicated or difficult to understand, but that’s not the case. It’s pretty simple.

    Although some people may think that 2pac was just strutting in borrowed plumes or trying to brag when he mentioned his family’s relation with the black panthers, he actually brought up the topic up for a good reason because it seems that he was influenced quite a lot by this and that it was an essential part of who he was. He repeated some of the arguments used by the panthers and carried on some of their views to a certain extent, but most importantly, he had the desire to help the poor black communities instilled very deeply in him. I think this desire was very essential to him, but I think a lot of people don’t realize this and get confused or perceive him as a hypocrite because he started flirting with the gangster stuff.

    Anyways, to understand how his concern for those well-off basically remained intact throughout his career, it may be useful to break it into three phases:

    1. In the early stages of his career (e.g. 2pacalypse Now), he had not really adopted the gangster mentality yet, and he would address social and political issues quite overtly. So I’m not sure this needs any explaining. His purpose was simply to address certain social and political problems that existed in the ghettos.

    2. When he formed Thug Life and adopted the gangster mentality, he also adopted a new approach. There is no need to pretend that the music was any different than any other gangster rap that was out at the time because it wasn’t. He wasn’t saying anything in his music that hadn’t already been said by other gangster rappers. The important difference, however, is that 2pac saw that people who belong to a suppressed minority are likely to struggle with self-esteem issues and that the particular mentality conveyed in gangster rap could help these people increase their self-esteem and allowed them to feel better about themselves. No other gangster rappers were really talking about this or explaining themselves this way. At the same time, he also seemed to believe that he was addressing social and political issues with gangster rap (like he was early in his career) because certain people like Dan Quayle and C. Delores Tucker became offended by his lyrics. He liked that very much since he argued that it created attention about the problems that existed in the ghettos and eventually would prompt people to do something about it.





    3. When 2pac arrived at Death Row, he continued or even increased the gangster mentality, and he probably carried on some of the beliefs he had when he formed Thug Life, but he also developed some new ones. Now that he had become part of a black-owned label, it seems that he believed he could bring some real change about by helping that company expand and become big because he appeared to believe that the company would be able to affect and improve the lives of black people more directly. He probably liked the idea that people from the streets who didn’t have any educational background were hired. Some rappers have become extremely rich today as 2pac probably apired to become with Death Row, but you don’t hear them talking about feeding every person in New York as 2pac does in this interview below:



    I understand if people want to argue or even disagree with 2pac’s points of views, but I don’t understand if they argue that he was an asshole who didn’t care about anyone else than himself.

    It’s also important to understand the Death Row-Bad Boy beef and what happened when he was shot in New York in order to understand his behavior when he arrived at Death Row and perhaps also to appreciate his two last albums a bit better, but I don’t have time to go into all that right now. Only thing I can say is that the beef was not mediated at all. If anything, it was probably worse than the media portrayed it to be. 2pac was caught up in a real situation in NY, which affected and influenced him A LOT. The way he behaved in the end was basically a reaction of what he had went through in NY and the circumstances he got caught up in afterwards.

    The only thing I want to say in the end is that I think some people may be turned off by the fact that some call 2pac the best rapper of all time and praise him to an extent that is out of touch with reality. 2pac didn’t agree with this himself. In an interview he did just before he died, he said “I never thought I was the best rapper-the best nothin'. I think I'm the realest nigga out there.” Although he was bright to some degree and also was a good rapper, he knew that he wasn’t the best rapper and that there were people out there who were brighter than him, but he didn’t feel that there were other rappers out there who were as passionate and dedicated to their cause as he was.

    I don’t think the idea of 2pac getting a career in politics is completely far-fetched because 1) political and social issues seemed to matter a lot to him, 2) he had some knowledge on them 3) he was very dedicated and passionate about them and 4) he had charisma and a certain personality that were appealing to a lot of people. But I still doubt how far he could have made it because unlike Schwarzenegger, 2pac had a criminal record (among other things, he shot an off-duty policeman in the ass who was harassing a black man) and gang tattoos (which documented his loyalty with Mob Piru, which is the particular fraction of the bloods that Suge is associated with).

  • GamleOleGamleOle 508 Posts
    JonnyPaycheck said:
    He's ridden Pac's style throughout his career including cover versions of actual Pac songs ("Bonnie & Clyde"). There's other examples but I always think of "Feelin' It" because it could easily be a Pac song.

    I think Jay Z needs to be called out for trying to make a cover of 2pac's "Me And My Girlfriend" with "Bonnie And Clyde". That was probably the most studpid and corny attempt of making a cover song. "Me And My Girlfriend" was not about 2pac and his girlfriend. It was a about 2pac and his GUN (the same way that Rick James' "Mary Jane" is not about a girl but weed). The point of 2pac's song was to NOT take it literally but Jay Z did just that. And not only that, he turned the song from being some serious ganger rap into some corny song about Beyonce. Jay Z' version failed miserably if you ask me. But other than that, I agree that 2pac's influence can be found among a lot of rappers.

  • GrafwritahGrafwritah 4,184 Posts
    I don't see how anyone could solidly come to those conclusions based just on listening to his music and interview snippets. That's just postulating.

  • GamleOleGamleOle 508 Posts
    G-Writah said:
    I don't see how anyone could solidly come to those conclusions based just on listening to his music and interview snippets. That's just postulating.

    The few interview snippets I have included in my post are only brief illustrations and not the basis of everything I have written, but I still believe that they illustrate some of my conclusions. If you feel that I am only postulating, then I would say that you need to spend more time reading about him. I think most people would come to these conclusions after having studied him enough.

    The only thing that's missing from my post and is important in order to understand why he acted as he did when he was released from jail is the story of what happened in NY and how it affected him afterwards.




  • ketanketan Warmly booming riffs 2,387 Posts
    G-Writah said:
    I don't see how anyone could solidly come to those conclusions based just on listening to his music and interview snippets. That's just postulating.

    I mean, I've seen so many videos of him doing interviews with being a passionate advocate for (racial) social justice. More than just sound bites. He was a really compelling person in that way, I thought. His music was gangsta, but pretty conscious at the same time. Like some One Gud Cide ish.



    In the generation before him, there were more popular rappers being vocal about those things too. But I feel like it was raerer by the time the mid-90s rolled around. (Other examples??)

    He seemed pretty happy being an entertainer/artist. Not sure how likely he would have been to be a politician. I'm sure he had a healthy hate-on for the government. :PFUNK:
    (Jus'postulatin')

  • GamleOleGamleOle 508 Posts
    ketan said:
    G-Writah said:
    I don't see how anyone could solidly come to those conclusions based just on listening to his music and interview snippets. That's just postulating.

    I mean, I've seen so many videos of him doing interviews with being a passionate advocate for (racial) social justice. More than just sound bites. He was a really compelling person in that way, I thought. His music was gangsta, but pretty conscious at the same time. Like some One Gud Cide ish.



    In the generation before him, there were more popular rappers being vocal about those things too. But I feel like it was raerer by the time the mid-90s rolled around. (Other examples??)

    He seemed pretty happy being an entertainer/artist. Not sure how likely he would have been to be a politician. I'm sure he had a healthy hate-on for the government. :PFUNK:
    (Jus'postulatin')

    I agree that his music was conscious and gangster at the same time, and that is probably confusing to some people. The point of my post was probably to illustrate that social issues mattered more to him than it may seem to some people. In the end, he was caught up in an unfortunate situation and started turning more to the gang stuff, but it didn’t seem like that was who he was. 2pac was shot in NY because some pretty serious streets dudes (Henchman, Haitian Jack and Tut) believed that he had been disrespectful towards them. I guess one of the reasons why 2pac signed to Death Row was because he needed protection from these guys, and Suge had a lot of gang members around to protect him. Then 2pac was also pissed at Biggie and Puffy because these guys that had shot 2pac were associated with Bad Boy (they were probably extorting Puffy and using him to launder money). 2pac didn’t like how Biggie and Puffy handled the situation afterwards, and I guess the affiliation they had with these guys didn’t help. And he also suspected Puffy of being part of a plot to get him to the Quad studio, where he was shot. He also suspected Stretch (from Live Squad) of knowing that he would get robbed. So when 2pac was released from prison, he had a lot of anger in him because he felt that he had been betrayed by all these people who he had supported and helped with their careers, and because it was a great threat to his reputation that he had been assaulted in NY. And then when he became part of Death Row, he also became part of this gang environment which he felt he had to prove his loyalty to because they had his back and showed him love. So I’m not sure that how he behaved in the end was really what he was about.

    Here is a good clip with him that’s a bit insightful. It’s a private conversation that he had with a friend who accidently recorded their phone conversation back in late 95/early 96 and recently released it on youtube. According to what he says in this conversation, the same people who had him robbed and shot in NY also set him up and had him accused of rape. So this also helps illustrate why he was so pissed off towards the end of his life.



    Here is an interview with DJ Quik, where he basically talks about what I have talked about above. Also notice that he actually reveals who killed 2pac (Orlando Anderson because the chain that he snatched from a Death Row employee called Travon Lane and therefore was attack after the Tyson fight). I think most people who were around or close enough to 2pac know that he was killed by Orlando Anderson, but so far DJ Quik is the only one who has talked about it so openly. Everyone else only hints it.

    (Starts around 5:58)



  • ketanketan Warmly booming riffs 2,387 Posts
    jada and stern yenta-ing it up about 2pac

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