Tupac (named after a Peruvien Revolutionist Tupac Amaru) Shakur, also known as 2Pac or later called in his life Makaveli was an American born rapper born on June/16/1971 and died on September/ 13/ 1996. His biological father was a revolutionist, and it’s claimed that his family’s NYC apartment was raided by the FBI looking for him, on Christmas when he was a child. His mother also states at the beginning of the music video for “Dear Mama” that she was in prison for being in the Black Panther movement and that she was pregnant with Tupac while she was in prison, but was released before he was born. He was born in Harlem, but relocated to L.A in 1988. He got into hip hop via being a background dancer for Digital Underground, a major hip hop group from the late 1980s and early 1990s, and last studio album in 2008. Tupac can be seen in the music video for their song “Humpty Dance”, he then had a part in their song “Same Song.” After he left the group, he released his album “2Pacalypse Now.” The album was a hit, but was very controversial, one of the most notorious song in the album is “Brenda’s Got a Baby”, a song about a teen girl who had a teen pregnancy, and her struggle to survive with the baby. Tupac’s record label Interscope Records, (owned by Universal Records) told him how the album and mainly “Brenda’s Got a Baby” was a “marketing disaster.” Tupac forced them to not change it and told them that he won’t change it, as it was an issue in the U.S.A and wants to tell people about the issue.
Tupac made a deal to switch recording studios to the infamous Death Row Records, but would have Universal still disturbed the songs, making the deal quick and easy. Death Row Records was owned by Suge Knight (he lost it when the studio lostv artists after Tupac died and lost a lot of their money, and in prison for 28 years for a guilty plea deal involving the death of a friend in a hit and run), and had artists such as Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. Tupac became a major figure in the west-coast hip hop scene, and released “Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z” and “All Eyez On Me” he was one of if not one of the biggest figures in hip hop across the country. After legal issues, and an armed robbery outside the Quad Recording Studios in New York City where he almost died, he was a major part of the West-Coast V. East-Coast hip hop rivalry. He accused P. Diddy and Biggie Smalls (aka. Notorious B.I.G) of planning the robbery to kill him, due to a song they released shortly after the robbery titled “Who Shot You?” believing it was a mocking of Tupac to make fun of him.
This caused them to get into a major war with Tupac being the King of West Coast Hip Hop, and Biggie Smalls being the King of East Hip Hop. As a response Tupac released “Hit ‘Em Up” a diss track towards Biggie, and the group he founded “Junior M.A.F.I.A” with the support of his own group “The Outlawz” where Tupac claimed to have had sex with Biggie’s wife Faith Evans. This launched the war, and the two rappers continued to attack each other with lesser known diss tracks. The posthumous song “Runnin’ (Dying to Live)” was a single that the two former rappers made the song before the robberies, as Biggie helped Tupac rise to fame. This is also when Tupac’s acting life started to gain traction as he acted in many movies since he joined Digital Underground such as “Juice”, “Nothing but Trouble”, “Gang Related”, “Above the Rim”,and “Bullet.” He also changed his stage name to Markavelli due to him being influenced by the Italian philosopher with the same name and released the song “Hail Mary.”
His life was ended on the day of September 7th 1996, he was in a fight with a Crips gang member Orlando Anderson. The fight allegedly was about a member of the Outlawz and had his gang with him fight Orlando. This was in the lobby MGM Grand Hotel and Casino after the “Bruce Seldon V. Mike Tyson” boxing match. Tupac’s manager and director Suge Knight broke up the fight, and they were driving to a Las Vegas club, they were stopped at the red light on the corner of Koval and Flamingo Avenue. And two girls came up on the Suge’s side of the company owned BMW 750iL (part of a convoy with the bodyguards behind the car) he was driving (up for sale for over a million dollars with some refurbishings today), while Tupac and Knight were talking with the girls, a white Cadillac pulled up on Tupac’s side. The gunman shot at Tupac multiple times, wounding him two times in the chest, once in the arm, and once in the leg. The gun is believed to have been .40 caliber rounds from a Glock. Knight in a panic drove recklessly to the hospital but were chased by police, lucky for them, two other cops saw the incident and helped them at the scene of the police stop. Tupac was sent to University Medical Center in Las Vegas Valley, Nevada. Unfortunately Tupac died in hospital on September 13th from internal bleeding. The murder was considered unsolved along with Biggie’s the next year in the same drive-by shooting fashion. Most people suspected Biggie due to them being rivals, but some suspected the Crips (because of the MGM Grand fight), and that it was Suge Knight himself organized to assassination.
Many people believe that Knight owned Tupac millions of dollars, and killing him would solve it, but it was disproven due to Tupac being Death Row’s most valuable asset to the company bringing in millions of dollars in music sales to the company. His body was cremated the next day, and reportedly cremated by his entire hip hop group, The Outlawz. Tupac’s legacy lives today, with millions of people still listening to his music, messages, and creating art of him 22 years after his death.