Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of the death of the Notorious B.I.G. Considered one of the greatest if not the greatest to ever grace the microphone, the Notorious B.I.G. left an indelible mark on hip hop. Brooklyn, born, Christopher Wallace was shot and killed at the age of 24 in Los Angeles, California on March 9, 1997, his murder still remains unsolved.
Rapper, Too $hort was a fan of Biggie.
Appearing on the Scoop B Radio Podcast , the Oakland legend reflected on the talent of both Biggie and the late Tupac Shakur.
Check Out Too $hort & Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson Chatting on Scoop B Radio
“A lot of guys that go into the studio, we have our songs, we’re good songwriters, we make great records & we have nice formulas,” Too $hort told me.
“You have a song, you mix it down – the thing about these other guys is they go into a studio and they appear to be like magic or something – like they’re not normal people because they have these super abilities, it just happened to be those two guys. It’s like a lot of them out there but those two guys, both could go in a session and do miracles and Everybody in the room would go “when, where and how did they come up with that? Like how did you just do that?” with BIG, it would be like – that whole technique of not writing raps, he would just sit there appearing to not be working on the song and then he would just go “I’m ready,” and then would just go into the booth…and its perfect – like “what the fuck?! How did you come up with that shit?” 2PAC, he would be in the studio…he would hear the track – the track we were working on, and he would start writing. He would be done in like 5-10 minutes! The fucking verse will take me 30 minutes maybe – 45 minutes to an hour to write one verse. I’m just sitting there trying to do something real tight, trying to make it all make sense … the man writes as fast as he can write. He writing nonstop and its rhyming, and its prolific and it’s a 2pac classic…everybody in the room would be saying the same thing. You can’t write one verse as fast as he can write one song.”
Although The Notorious B.I.G.’s career spanned only five years but his two albums, Ready to Die and Life After Death left an impact on not just hip hop, but the world. Many discuss the difference between gifted and talented. Too $hort believed that Biggie and Tupac were both! “I would have to say – both guys can be gifted, wouldn’t you just say both,”Too $hort said.
“That’s a gift to have that ability to express yourself in that fashion with 2PAC writing that fast and Biggie being able to put these words together in his head without pen and paper…and it just go right. It comes out and everybody’s like “it’s timeless.” So, I would go gifted on those guys, but I know what you mean … when I think about people who are talented when it comes to making songs, and they just know how to put to together, you start to formulate and you just put it together…but these guys, they’re like something out of earth with that ability to express themselves on a song.”
The Notorious B.I.G.’s style and grace, his gentle persona and his love for people impacted folks everywhere that he went. He’s still respected globally. The Ten Crack Commandments, Kick In The Door, Juicy, Hypnotize, Warning, One More Chance, Party and Bullshit are Biggie classics still getting spin on DJ’s playlists to this day.