Tupac Amaru Shakur, also known as 2pac. He was very popular in the 90’s. He would include addressing contemporary social issues. That plagued inner cities, and is a activism against inequality. He was born in 1971 in New York City, but traveled west. Everyone all over knew who he was and had most likely heard a piece of his music.
Tupac grew up struggling when his mother had struggled with drug addiction and had over 150 charges. He would cope with music and it caught people’s ears. Tupac inspired people with his music when he got involved in rapping. He rapped about feminism and his opinion on women. And sold over 75 million records worldwide.
What was Tupac saying?
When he published “Keep Ya Head Up” people loved and connected to the lyrics. On this piece they got brought closer to 2pac and his music. “And since we all came from a woman, got our name from a woman and our game from a woman. I wonder why we take from our women, why we rape our women, do we hate our women?” -2pac
This has shown that as a man he understood what was going on in the world and confused on what we are doing. He was a feminist who wanted to make a change in our world with his voice. He established that this song was not only for the daughter of Salt-N-Pepa’s kid, Corin. Although she not only reached his heart or spoke to black women. As it defended them from within a genre that was and still very much is a man’s game.
After that verse he says
“I think it’s time we kill for our women, time to heal our women, be real to our women. And if we don’t we’ll have a race of babies that will hate the ladies that make our babies. And since a man can’t create one, he has no right to tell a woman when and where to create one.” So for one he established the problem, then came up with what the men should do, and that is what is right.
“I think it’s time we kill for our women, time to heal our women, be real to our women. And if we don’t we’ll have a race of babies that will hate the ladies that make our babies. And since a man can’t create one, he has no right to tell a woman when and where to create one.””
— Tupac Shakur
How did Tupac inspire?
“2Pac’s unapologetic lyrics were relevant, important, and reflective of the hard lives led by many. His music earned attention and respect through a poetic style that embraced street vocabulary while being innovative. Today, 2Pac is still considered by many to be one of the biggest influences on modern hip-hop.” – this day in music. And that article published on September 13, 1996 and now, 26 years later, it is no different. Now his language was often foul in his music. It was because he wanted to serve a purpose to get us to understand. Understand what he was saying because he meant what he sang about.
Even other popular artists looked up to Tupac instead of thinking of him as an enemy in the music industry. Eminem during his 11th time winning a Grammy once said “He made you feel like you knew him. I think that , honestly, Tupac was the greatest songwriter that ever lived. He made it seem so easy. The emotion was there, and feeling, and everything he was trying to describe. You saw a picture that he was trying to paint.” He wanted to reach an audience that cared, Tupac wanted to reach people’s brains but also hearts. He was a very honest person because what was going on in the world has no sugar coating.
Who was Tupac?
He grew up struggling and did not have everything given to him. So he had a huge understanding of those who struggled. He had a problem with anyone who was very closed-minded and disrespectful. Spent much of his childhood on the move so he never grew up in the steadiest household. Shakur moved from New York to Baltimore in 1984. He grew up in poverty and started his love for music young in High School. Joined school plays (theater), joined a poetry club, and studied music all in his high school years. Later on, Tupac put together a benefit concert. He wanted to help so he held a growing non-profit organization. A Place Called Home, raising money for a new building.
In 1992 Tupac stated in an unreleased interview with MTV, “Everybody’s taught that. You wanna be successful? You wanna be like Trump? Gimme gimme gimme, push push push push, step step step, crush crush crush. That’s how it all is… It’s too much money here. Nobody should be hitting the lotto for 36 million and we’ve got people starving in the streets. That’s not idealistic, that’s just real. That’s just stupid… There’s no way that these people should own planes and there are people who don’t have houses.”
When he said this, it angered some people. Quite a lot agreed with him since people who grew up like Tupac did, often listened to his music. They kept on track with what he was doing with his career. When he released his album “2pacalypse Now” it discussed real world problems. Including, mass incarceration, violence, illegal drugs, police brutality and racism. What he brought to hip hop was a level of rawness and a poetic drive in the way he delivered his words. He had a level of self-empowerment that made people want to listen to what he had to say. Even today, you could go anywhere and there would be people who know of Tupac.
What did Tupac leave behind?
His most famous quote that stuck around even after he passed was “Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside while still alive. Never surrender.” Which people very much looked up to because when we all lost him, people ended up devastated. Since they had so much heart for him. But with Tupac’s verses calling out racism, war, violence, drugs and police brutality. He started to sound more authentic. Shakur put a different perspective on people who grow up struggling. He addressed issues of poverty, classism, and racial segregation. All things that he experienced firsthand growing up.
He always wanted to make an impact. As much as Martin Luther King and Malcom X. He wanted his voice to be as powerful as theirs was to grab people’s attention. To create change. Which is why when he sang, he sang from the pit of his stomach. That is where all his power came from and why his voice got people to listen to the issues he sang and rapped about. Tupac’s legacy reminds us that creativity and art are important and so is the message.