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Who Killed Tupac Shakur?
September 6, 2002 2:25 AM   Subscribe

Who Killed Tupac Shakur? More importantly, does the L.A. Times run the risk of re-igniting an east-coast/west-coast rap "war" by implicating a certain notorious indivdual in a feud that was virtually nonexistent until the media hyped it up the first time around?
posted by aflores (34 comments total)

 
personally i'm still on the tupac's-not-dead bandwagon. come on, the evidence speaks for itself!
posted by joedan at 2:49 AM on September 6, 2002


joedan,

A friend is convinced, without a shadow of a doubt, that Tupac continues to roam the earth. Provided, he spouts some rather convincing evidence, notably all the posthumous releases, that account for Tupac's existence ... but then he drags out the not-so-convincing stuff ... the numerology evidence.

Seriously, 'Pac would have needed a Ph.D. in Pure Mathematics to coordinate all this 'ish. ;)

It's interesting to note the particular way the hip-hop scene has evolved since the mid-90s, when both Tupac and B.I.G were outselling their peers. The "banger" has all but eclipsed hip-hop with any sort of relevant message, at least in the mainstream sense ... not that shaking your ass isn't relevant, but really, I find myself digging into the underground more often than not.
posted by aflores at 3:18 AM on September 6, 2002


cobain did it.
posted by quonsar at 5:39 AM on September 6, 2002


How can you read that story, in which all of the rappers were neck deep in violence, crime, and street gangs, and blame the media for any of it?
posted by rcade at 5:40 AM on September 6, 2002


rcade,

The ongoing feud between Tupac Shakur and Christopher "Biggie" Wallace was a very real thing and is well-documented. And yes, both of these individuals should be held accountable, in some fashion, for the trouble they brought upon themselves.

But once the media got involved, they sensationalized what was a feud between two individuals into the now infamous, but virtually non-existant "east-coast/west-coast" rap feud.

With the past record of events, you would think a paper such as the L.A. Times would show a little less carelessness in publishing such a story, one that appears to be based on hearsay evidence from members of gangs, at best.
posted by aflores at 6:21 AM on September 6, 2002


One thing has always puzzled me about this story. How the hell is "Suge" pronounced? Is it "soog"? "sooge"? Does it rhyme with "huge"? Should it why with "boogie"?
posted by alloneword at 6:30 AM on September 6, 2002


It was Ladybird Johnson, man.

Oh wait, wrong conspiracy...
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 6:37 AM on September 6, 2002


alloneword: I believe it's prounounce "Shoog" with soft o's like in book.
posted by Ufez Jones at 6:48 AM on September 6, 2002


Ufez/Alloneword: It is indeed "shoog," as in "sugar" without the "ar."
posted by Banky_Edwards at 7:00 AM on September 6, 2002


They are both dead. The immature imbeciles that wish to follow them or exact revenge for the 7000th time will soon follow.

Net benefit: average IQ increase in the surviving population.

I say put them all in a dome and let them fight it out till they wipe each other out or figure out on their own how stupid the entire thing is.

Net benefit: same as above.

The whole east coast/west coast thing just proves that thugs will create conflict where there is none to promote their violent vicious cycles.
posted by Ynoxas at 7:06 AM on September 6, 2002


However, even though it is pronounced "shoog," it should be pronounced to rhyme with "huge."
posted by kindall at 7:12 AM on September 6, 2002


With the past record of events, you would think a paper such as the L.A. Times would show a little less carelessness in publishing such a story, one that appears to be based on hearsay evidence from members of gangs, at best.

It's not the place of a newspaper to care whether its reporting is going to cause idiots to behave idiotically. The sourcing of the story makes it clear that it is based on considerably more than hearsay: interviews with investigators, witnesses, and members of the gang that took $1 million from Notorious B.I.G. to kill Shakur.

These folks were fully capable of sensationalizing their own petty grievances, violent threats, gang allegiances, and actual crimes without the involvement of the media. Did the L.A. Times make Shakur record a song in which he bragged to B.I.G., "So I fucked your bitch/You fat mutha-fucka .../You claim to be a playa/But, I fucked your wife"?
posted by rcade at 7:34 AM on September 6, 2002


The whole east coast/west coast thing just proves that thugs will create conflict where there is none to promote their violent vicious cycles.

I don't think this conflict was entirely artificial, like the stuff Eminem does in his songs to get publicity. These idiots actually allied themselves with rival street gangs, using them as bodyguards and participating in some of their revenge attacks on each other. While I believe that some rappers espouse "thug life" simply as a pose, it seems clear that Shakur, B.I.G., and others around them believed in all of their own violent hype.
posted by rcade at 7:38 AM on September 6, 2002



Ufez/Alloneword: It is indeed "shoog," as in "sugar" without the "ar."


Short for "Sugar Bear" IIRC.
posted by hilker at 8:50 AM on September 6, 2002


//Really OT (flash back to last summer)

Why do shark attacks keep happening?

Because boom-boxes blasting East-coast anger sharks who listen to West-coast.

//Done

Now that I have gotten that little meme out of my brain....

I agree with rcade. For some of these rappers the "thug-life" is the real deal and being seen as a thug is as valuable as being a thug. If you happen to be sociopathic, more power to you--it's a market advantage, not a hindrance.
posted by Tystnaden at 8:56 AM on September 6, 2002


Howcum whenever I say, "I am going to cap yo ass" I get laughed at?

I need a new threat.
posted by Fofer at 9:30 AM on September 6, 2002


BTW, there was so many posthumous Tupac releases because he spent the last years of his life in the studio. He wanted out of his contract, so he was trying to finish the five (I believe) albums that he owed.

So the vaults are stacked.
posted by Fahrenheit at 9:59 AM on September 6, 2002


What a terrible article. Not only is there not a single substantiated quote to back this up, there's not a single quote, even anonymous, in the entire story. The only primary source we get is an eyewitness to the crime, someone who could hardly provide any insight into the motives behind what happened.

The LA Times played a major part in stifling Gary Webb's Dark Alliance piece, which was well-documented, backed by massive amounts of evidence and extremely well-researched, and somehow manages to publish this garbage? The state of investigative journalism in this country is atrocious.
posted by eraserhed at 10:33 AM on September 6, 2002


"cap yo ass"... is that like capping an oil well? If so, then the thug life is definitely not for me.
posted by madprops at 10:57 AM on September 6, 2002


The article calls Tupac "the world's most famous rap star." The top-grossing movie of 1996, the year Tupac died, starred this guy. I can't see how Tupac was more famous, then or now. Not that I'm a fan of either guy.
posted by hilker at 11:03 AM on September 6, 2002


If the evidence is persuasive (and I'm not saying it is) that Biggie was intimately involved in Tupac's killing, does that mean we can look forward to Puff Daddy formally retracting his B.I.G. eulogy song "I'll Be Ripping Off the Police"?
Just wondering...and hoping.
posted by soyjoy at 12:42 PM on September 6, 2002


I was disappointed that the article didn't address the whole Tupac-Bush rivalry. After Tupac (Bloods?) left Baltimore for Marin City, Bush the elder (Skull and Bones) started dissing "misguided Marin County hot tubber[s]" (kids in Marin city made him eat his words). Bush's little hater Vice-President Dan Quayle of Indiana (of the Lake County Vice Lords?) said Tupac's music "has no place in our society", to which Tupac responded, "Dan Quayle don't you know you need your ass kicked?" . Things got worse when Tupac moved to a "tough neighborhood north of Oakland" (Berkeley); it could be argued that Tupac spawned the whole Bush-protest movement there that has spanned generations. Bush's alibi of re-roofing the presidential library between March and December 1996 (Tupac was shot in September) just doesn't hold weight for me. I could go on, but I think the evidence speaks for itself.

sorry, i'm sick, i got nothing better to do.
posted by eddydamascene at 1:33 PM on September 6, 2002


soyjoy: does that mean we can look forward to Puff Daddy...

Um, that's P. Diddy. Stop fronting.
posted by Fofer at 2:04 PM on September 6, 2002


Link to an affidavit filed by Compton police in September 1996, in which a source is quoted naming Orlando Anderson as Tupac's killer. (via Fark).
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:35 PM on September 6, 2002


Um, that's P. Diddy. Stop fronting.
Yo, step off, holmes. The song was recorded by an artist named Puff Daddy, and that's who's going to have to take the ... um... er... rap for it.
posted by soyjoy at 2:42 PM on September 6, 2002


The song was recorded by an artist named Puff Daddy...

Artist? That's generous.

As is this quote from the article:

The 25-year-old Shakur had helped elevate rap from a crude street fad to a complex art form, setting the stage for the current global hip-hop phenomenon.

So they are saying that for the entirety of the 70's and 80's, hip-hop music / rap was a "crude street fad?" That's one of the most ignorant statements I've read. LL Cool J, Run-DMC and other platinum selling artists from the 80's would get a good laugh out of that.

And they far overstate 2-Pac's musical importance - he was a star not solely due to his music, but also because of his acting career and high profile run-ins with the law.
posted by pitchblende at 4:26 PM on September 6, 2002


Fofer: I need a new threat.

i've always been partial to: "i'm going to bring you the law."

i have no idea what it means, it's just fun to say.
posted by quin at 4:46 PM on September 6, 2002


Fofer, I believe the reason that threat is not working is because you are holding your gun (aka "piece") straight. You need to hold it sideways, bro.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:36 PM on September 6, 2002


Is it "holmes?" Or "homes"? (As in, short for "homeboy.")
I'm serious. What's the etymology?

(It's probably these sorts of questions that minimize the effectiveness of my threats.)
posted by Fofer at 8:02 PM on September 6, 2002


I always thought it was "holmes" as in John Holmes.

In either case, I'm assuming you're not threatening because you are not a "Nigga With Attitude." I'm not quite sure what the process is to become a member of the N.W.A., but I think it involves moving to Compton.
posted by Stan Chin at 8:10 PM on September 6, 2002


i'm pretty sure it's homes as in 'home boy.'
posted by quin at 9:44 PM on September 6, 2002


I'm with Stan Chin on this one, quin. I'm quite certain that Cheech Marin was using "Holmes" (3K WAV) long before "home boys" came into general usage.

Also cited here (Geocities link, Google cache) and here, as well as the official City of Houston Mayor's Office - Office of Public Safety and Drug Policy - Anti-Gang Office.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:10 AM on September 7, 2002


Thanks for all the shoog news. Rhymes with "droog", then.
posted by alloneword at 12:40 PM on September 7, 2002


mr_crash_davis: Good point, i totally forgot that Cheech said it, i must have had my wires crossed.

[slinks away certain that his ignorance of the hood has been secured]
posted by quin at 9:27 PM on September 7, 2002


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