Twenty-Five years ago today, in the early hours of Sunday, March 9, 1997, Christopher Wallace a.k.a. The Notorious B.I.G. was shot four times in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles, California. He was 24 years old; he has officially been dead longer than he lived. Over the years, the hip-hop community as a whole has commemorated the life of Biggie Smalls. He will forever be connected to Tupac Shakur as well, from their friendship, their high-publicized rivalry to their still unsolved murders that took place exactly six months apart.
Arguably among the most pivotal events in the evolution of Hip Hop music, were the murders of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls. They embodied the entirety of the infamous – so-called – “East Coast/West Coast Rivalry” that defined the Hip Hop genre in the mid-1990s and were the most highly visible casualties of it.
One of those who knew him well – Jadakiss, the raspy voice rapper from the Yonkers’ , whose voice got BARS even when he’s not rapping – remembers Big. In an interview Kiss talks about everything from the last time they were together in LA just before Big was murdered to being there was when Biggie first heard “HIT EM UP.” HIT EM UP was diss song by 2Pac, featuring the Outlawz, released on June 4, 1996. The song’s lyrics contain vicious insults to several East Coast rappers, chiefly Shakur’s former-friend-turned-rival, The Notorious B.I.G.
This year, the estate for the late rapper honors on 25th Anniversary of his death with a rare box set and a Netflix Documentary in a new year-long campaign, Sky’s The Limit: A Year Celebrating The Legacy of the Notorious B.I.G.