It is hard to believe that Biggie Smalls has been gone for 15 years now.
It is hard to believe that he is even gone at all.
If you are like me, you come from a generation that may or may not have entirely understood the impact of Biggie's untimely death on hip-hop while it was happening. But as you have aged, you have seen his musical reach. To this generation, Biggie isn't so much a person, as a legacy. He is the rapper that our favorite rappers rap about. He is the sample that runs through the newest song. He is the man that we have never met but speak about as if we have known our entire lives; mostly because we have known of him nearly our entire lives.
But Biggie Smalls wasnt always Notorious. There was a time when he was grinding for a deal and dreaming just like the rest of us. When he made his demo tape (and I do literally mean demo tape), he did it because he loved to rhyme. He wasn't trying to ride a wave or make a hot record and it showed in all the right ways.
In March of 1992 Biggie got a dope cosign and was featured in the Source Magazine's Unsigned Hype Column. Check out what they had to say about The Notorious B-I-G and Hitman 50 grand back in the beginning below. Hit the citation for the orignal article and photos.
"If you're an aspiring rapper and you know you have the flavor and potential to make dope records, you don't need to go into the studio and spend crazy cash to make a fly demo. You don't even need a 4-track; just two turntables and a microphone, press record on the tape deck and you're good to go. B-I-G is living proof of this fact. His DJ, Hitman 50 Grand, threw on a couple classic breaks and instrumentals and let B-I-G do what he had to do: he ripped shit. Straight outta Brooklyn, New York, the heavy-set brother B-I-G has mad skills. His rhymes are fatter than he is. All four of his jams were basically a freestyle exhibition. Obviously, to come out as an MC takes a lot more than hype rhymes, but rhyme skills are the main ingredient to true success in hip-hop, and when it comes to those, B-I-G's got plenty. —coordinated by MATEY C" - Source Magazine
Make sure you tune into HOT 97 tonight at 7pm to hear Mister Cee's tribute to the late great Notorious One.
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