On this day 20 years ago, Tupac Amaru Shakur died from multiple gunshot wounds sustained in a drive-by shooting several nights before following a Mike Tyson fight in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Born Lesane Parish Crooks, Pac was named Tupac Amaru Shakur not long after his birth. His early childhood situations provided the foundation upon which Pac would spin critically-acclaimed lyrical tales later on.
Poverty, the Black Power Movement via his mother Afeni Shakur, the perils of drug abuse which were learned first hand from his mother, and the street life he witnessed in Oakland, California as a young man, and even beautifully poetic tales of maternal love, were woven into tales that few emcees have come close to matching since.
We could write volumes extolling the merits of the man, discussing his demons, and celebrating his music legacy. But what we loved best about Tupac Shakur was his ability to make every topic his very own from a unique, passionate musical perspective.
Here are five of my favorite Pac joints of all-time preceded by my favorites that didn’t make the final five.
I Get Around
Holla if Ya Hear Me
To Live and Die in L.A
5. Ambitionz Az a Ridah
4. Brenda’s Got a Baby
3. I Ain’t Mad At Cha
2. Dear Mama