…and I agree with him!
Y’know, I haven’t voted for a Republican since the 2000 Presidential election (when I voted for John McCain in the primary), but if this guy runs in 2016, he’s got my vote now. 🙂
Leave it to a U.S. senator to resurrect the East Coast-West Coast hip hop debate. Republican Sen. Marco Rubio weighed in once again on his love for the deceased rapper Tupac, who often rapped about the violence and racial tensions that plagued Los Angeles in the 90s. During a wide-ranging interview with BuzzFeed that streamed live online Tuesday night, the Miami-born senator was asked why he’s not a fan of Tupac’s rival the Notorious B.I.G., a Brooklyn-based rapper who’s also deceased.
“I think Tupac’s lyrics are probably more insightful,” he said. Rubio added that he attended college and law school during that time and “grew up” in the era Tupac’s music was most popular. “In some ways rappers are like reporters,” he said. “At that time, there was a lot of reporting of what life was like in South Central, in the L.A. area. They were reporting what life was like.”
Asked if he learned any political lessons from rap music, Rubio laughed, saying “probably not.” Although, he did point out Tupac mentioned former GOP presidential nominee Bob Dole in a song. The song, “How Do You Want It,” also mentioned former President Bill Clinton. “You’d never thought Bob Dole had anything to do with hip hop, but he did,” Rubio joked.
Darn right! I know this is an eternal debate among hardcore rap fans, but I’m always siding with Tupac. First, I will admit that I didn’t really get into Biggie until many years after he was killed. I’m from Los Angeles, so when all of that was jumping off, I had to ride with the West Coast rappers. And I was a fan of Digital Underground, since the beginning, so I’d been following Tupac throughout his whole career. Hands down, I think he’s one of the best rappers ever, I put him up there with legends like Rakim, KRS-One, and Grandmaster Melle Mel. Eminem and Jay Z are the only modern rappers who come close to him, in my opinion.
Now, as I said, I did eventually become familiar with Biggie, and he was extremely good, too. He was, from what I understand, particularly adept at freestyling (just making up a rap as he went along, without writing anything down), and I think his wordplay was much greater than Tupac. He could come up with more memorable lines, and rap in metaphors and stuff like that. But I give Tupac the edge for his creative output. The fact that he was so fast at recording new songs, reportedly an average of 3 a day, and left a catalog of over 100 unreleased songs when he died. That takes a lot of talent.
By comparison, look at Biggie, he recorded only two full albums, one of which was a double-album, by the time of his death. So it’s easy to just base your opinion of him on these two great albums. But what if he’d lived? Would his 3rd album have been as good as the first two? Or the 4th album? The fifth? Heck, for all we know, Biggie might have fallen off and just been forgotten by now, like many other hot rappers of the 90’s, especially most of the Bad Boy artists (anybody seen Craig Mack, lately?).
Then look at Tupac and his catalog. They released 7 albums of unreleased material after his death (not counting the various Greatest Hits and Remix collection albums, 5 of which went multi-platinum. Even the last album, Pac’s Life, which was the last of his leftover scraps from the studio, still went GOLD, upon its release, 10 years after his death. Keep in mind, besides the 7 Day Theory, the following 6 albums were songs that he didn’t plan on even using while he was alive. So just imagine if he had lived, and created new songs, being able to work directly with modern artists who came after him. I think it’s safe to theorize that Tupac would have remained commercially successful for many years if he’d lived. And that doesn’t even take into account his rising acting career. He could be a combination of Jay Z and Will Smith today, still making relevant music and starring in blockbuster films.
Again, this isn’t to say that Notorious B.I.G. wasn’t good, but Tupac Amaru Shakur was better.