A tribute to one of the most influential artists of my life. At age 10 I figured out a way to obtain what is still one of my favorite albums by Tupac entitled, “All Eyes On Me”. The year was 1996 and the nation was spinning from the influence that rap culture was ultimately impacting its youth. Regardless of the explicit nature of his tracks, Tupac is an inspiration to anyone who takes the time to listen to his lyrics. I feel lucky for having the opportunity to see the harsh reality his music told at the age I did. Being from an affluent, suburban neighborhood I nonetheless memorized the lyrics to every track on both of those 2 “books” along with a myriad more. Not only did it give me a perspective beyond the care-free life I was privileged enough to grow up living, but at the bottom line- Tupac was a thug- and shit well so was I for about 6 years straight on Halloween.
Now while Tupac is most often remembered for his contribution to gangster rap- he was also an incredible poet. The following poem of his is my favorite and funnily enough I brought it into class to share in the 7th grade. To say the least, my english teacher was surprised but also rather impressed.
When Tupac was shot down it was a shock heard round the world; yet the legacy he left behind is something few in this world could come close to attaining. The fact that in so much of his music he admits and seems to inevitably foresee an early death for himself only further makes me appreciate the way this man lived his life based on the circumstances he was dealt from birth.
Remembering the incredible artist he was I often listen to the following track and smile:
His final words: “Anytime ya’ll wanna see me again, rewind this track right here, close your eyes, and picture me rollin'” – well at this point I think its pretty self-explanatory.