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Tupac also known as 2Pac is an American rapper, who is arguably the most influential in the history of the genre of rap. His untimely death halted his ascending career and partially contributed to elevate him to the category of “rap legend”. Influences of Tupacs style was strongly influenced by things like The Black Panther Party, black nationalism, egalitarianism and freedom. He tended to reflect these main themes in the lyrics of his pieces. He attacked social injustices, a very common injustice that he voiced his opinion on was the negative aspects of police. Throughout his life he had experiences that influenced and shaped how he wrote and what he wrote in his pieces.
Tupac Amaru Shakur, who was born Lesane Parish Crooks, better known as 2 Pac or Tupac, was a singer, actor, composer, producer, writer, poet, screenwriter and dancer of the hip hop cultural genre worldwide. He was born on June 16, 1971 in East Harlem, New York, United States. His mother was Afeni Shakur (born Alice Faye Williams) and his father, Billy Garland, were part of the Black Panther political movement.
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He spent much of his childhood continuously moving throughout the country with his mother and siblings. Despite living in poverty for most of his life, he managed to enter the prestigious school of Fine Arts in Baltimore. At this school they provided ways that Tupac could practice,rapping and acting. This is where he is said to begin to develop his creative style of rapping. Tupac enjoyed classes, and had the opportunity to study theater, jazz, ballet, among other things. Although before he graduated he moved with his family to Marin City, California.
Tupac had many influential people in his life, many of them are his motivation to write in the style and manner that he did. His godfather, Ger??nimo Pratt, was an important character in the Black Panthers. His stepfather Mutulu was a drug dealer who, according to Tupac, was never around to give him the important fatherly modeling he needed. His style and lyrics were strongly influenced by social injustices in society in that time period, so it makes since that The Black Panther Party, black nationalism, egalitarianism and freedom, were common subjects that he reflected in the lyrics of his pieces. He attacked social injustices, and had a very strong opinion when it came to how police were interacting with the population. While in prison he read writers such as Nicol??s Machiavelli, Donald Goines, Sun Tzu, Kurt Vonnegut, Mikhail Bakunin, Maya Angelou, Alice Walker and Khalil Gibran. (put a common theme that these writers write about to tie it into the paragraph)
Tupacs first composed rap was in Baltimore, under the name of “MC New York” with the group Born Busy. The song addressed that controversial topic of gun control. The piece was inspired and was dedicated to the murder of a close friend. The characteristics that made him such a popular and listened to rapper was his keen ability to improvise. Althugh most of his music addressed serious topics, his sense of humor also drew a different crowd to his music. Lastly, his impressive quality to show sympathy had people of all genders, ethnicities and ages listening to his work.
Beginning in the decade of the 90s he debuted with his song “Same Song” in Digital Underground, appearing in the soundtrack of the movie “Nothing But Trouble” (1991). It was the main single of the EP “This is an EP Release”, the second publication of the group after its successful “Sex Packets”. Later he collaborated in the album of the group “Sons of the P.” For November 1991 he released his first solo album “2Pacalypse Now”, with which he had some problems to commercialize, thanks to a support along with Interscope Records, Ted Field and Tom Whalley, manage to distribute the album. This work was not so successful for what would come in the future. His second record production was “Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.” was released in 1993 under the production of Randy “Stretch” Walker and Live Squad. His songs “Keep Ya Head Up” and “I Get Around” were positioned with more success, the last mentioned in collaboration with Shock G and Money-B from Digital Underground. By the end of 1993, he was part of the Thug Life group with several colleagues of the genre such as Big Syke, Macadoshis, Mopreme Shakur (his stepbrother) and Rated R. With this group he released only one album titled “Thug Life: Volume 1” for the September 26, 1994, which was a gold record. In this one it included the subject “Pour Out a Little Liquor”, produced by Johnny “J” Jackson. The meaning of “Thug Life” was an acronym for The Hate U Give Little Infants Fucks Everybody, a philosophical phrase from Shakur. During the years 1991 and 1995, he was implicated in several legal accusations, for which he had to pay jail on several occasions, as well as certain fines of thousands of dollars. One of these was a young man who murdered an American police officer while listening to the album “2Pacalypse Now”, in which he mentions killing officers in one of his songs. Due to this, the US Vice President, Dan Quayle, decides to withdraw it from all music stores, which Interscope refused. he was tried for sexual abuse and sentenced between one and a half years and four years to prison. His sentence began in February 1995 and shortly after he released his multi-platinum album “Me Against The World”, being the only artist to have an album on Billboard 200 for five weeks while he was in prison. He collected more than 240 thousand copies sold with just one week, breaking a record in male rap. With only eight months in jail, he is released by help and influence of Suge Knight, the CEO of Death Row Records, paying a bail of 1.4 million dollars and in return demanded that he record three albums for the record label Death Row. In February of the following year (1996) he released his fourth solo album “All Eyez on Me”, achieving more than nine million copies sold. With several differences of “Me Against the World”, this album was more oriented to the gangster style. He would also continue with his recordings despite the problems in Death Row. Dr. Dre leaves his position as producer of the house to found his own label called Aftermath. Tupac continued releasing tracks during his stay in Death Row, most of them are released in his posthumous albums “R U Still Down? (Remember Me)”, Still I Rise, Until the End of Time, Better Dayz and Pac’s Life. In July 1996, he released the song “Hit ‘Em Up” with the group Outlawz. Later a project called One Nation began with artists from the East and West Coast, demonstrating that their problem was only with the Bad Boy group. His album The Don Kiluminati: 7 Day Theory was inspired by Nicolas Machiavelli. The name was related to the 3 days of recording of the disc and the four days of production.
Death of Tupac After attending a boxing match between Mike Tyson and Bruce Seldon on September 7, 1996, he had a fight in the lobby of the site with “Baby Lane” Anderson. After that they went to Club 662, property of Death Row Records. On the way there were some suspicious encounters, first a car that photographed him, then some policemen stopped him because of the excessive volume in the music of the car and finally a couple of girls who stopped at a traffic light to talk to him. Later, a white Cadillac model car fired 12 shots, hit by three of them, one hit his chest, the other his hand and the last his femur and pelvis. Before the event, some people had called the seal where Tupac belonged threatening to end him. The colleagues who received the call notified the Las Vegas police forces, but because there were not enough active officials, they could not provide the requested attention. After that he was sent to the University Medical Center, at the time of entering he was somewhat conscious. However, he was anesthetized and put to breathe in a medical ventilator. Then they connected him in an artificial respirator, finally he entered a coma induced by barbiturates. He entered several operations and his right lung was removed. Due to not supporting the state, on Friday September 13, 1996, he died as a result of an internal hemorrhage at 4:03 pm local time. Death was confirmed by respiratory failure and cardiorespiratory arrest. His body was incinerated days later.
After the death of Tupac He is considered the best rapper and most influential exponent of history, an image that represents his genre as Bob Marley has been in reggae. He is seen as one of the artists with the greatest example for society. His mother also founded the Shakur Family Foundation (later renamed the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation or TASF) in 1997. This foundation is responsible for “providing training and support for students who aspire to improve their creative talents”. Subsequently, the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts (TASCA) was inaugurated in Stone Mountain, Georgia, on June 11, 2005.
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