Tupac Shakur: Fifteen Years Later
To this day I remember the moment I heard Tupac had been shot and then a under a week later (13 September 1996), being informed that he had died. It is one of those things, I guess that I will take to the grave.
Fifteen years later, the prolific, revered and controversial icon still lives, in different art forms.
It all stems from one thing that most hip hop cats past and present do not have. Tupac’s passion was so strong it stirred the emotions of casual listeners along with his most ardent followers. What defined his greatness was both the things that made him heroic and his fallibility. Both came from the same source, that driven core that is human beings at their most raw and honest. He was what some people would call, real.
He was not as skilled a rapper as say, Nas or Jay-Z but the fact that in just 25 short years on earth with only eight of these given to the game, he was able to influence it so much speaks volumes of the man himself and his intelligence. He wasn’t just a wanton gangbanging hustler. Beyond the skill was a lot of thought, philosophy and a dedication to a belief system that he was willing to live or die by.
Fifteen years later, numerous previously unreleased songs have been released. Films have been made. His poetry is dissected and studied at colleges. His music still evokes emotion.
I didn’t want to quote Tupac at all in this article but I can’t resist the urge to have a go. One of his mantras, one that I live by as well is this:
I don’t wanna be forgotten
A friend wrote on twitter this morning… “Will your life story inspire someone to be a better person in society one day?”. Tupac, in his way, did that.