Today – March 9th, 2011 – Our station remembers the life and music of arguably the greatest MC to ever grace the stage; a man whose effortless style and lyrical flow has influenced countless rappers, like [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Diddy[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Jay-Z[/lastfm] and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Lil Kim[/lastfm] just to name a few. Born Christopher Wallace in Brooklyn, NY, the man known as Biggie, Big Poppa and Biggie Smalls to fans is known throughout the world as [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]The Notorious B.I.G.[/lastfm] – and we’re counting down some of his greatest music videos in remembrance.
The life of one of the greatest rappers of all time, [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]The Notorious B.I.G.[/lastfm] came to an end on this day 14 years ago.
[photogallerylink id=9425 align=left]Christopher Wallace was born on May 21st, 1972 in the Bed Stuy section of Brooklyn, New York. A high school drop out and local drug dealer, Wallace turned to music as his salvation for a better life. After catching the attention of producer Sean ‘Puff Daddy’ Combs, he signed a record deal with his music label Bad Boy records.
Wallace took on the stage name of The Notorious B.I.G. and electrified fans with his unique lyrical style. He continued to grow in fame in the mid 90s, so much so that he was one of the main parties involved in the infamous coastal rap war and more personally, rapper/actor [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Tupac Shakur[/lastfm]. Wallace would eventually lose his life, along with Shakur, to gun violence at the age of 24.
His hit songs, “Big Poppa”, “Hypnotize” and “Mo Money, Mo Problems” were all GRAMMY nominated songs and his album Life After Death was nominated for Best Rap Album in 1998.
Wallace’s legacy continues to grow well after his death for not only being a great rapper, but also a proud New Yorker.
Here is our Top 10 list of [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Notorious B.I.G[/lastfm]‘s best music videos!
#10 - Flava In Ya Ear
Biggie makes an unforgettable appearance on the opening verse of label mate Craig Mack’s ”Flava In Ya Ear” remix. This track is from 1994 and he appears alongside [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]LL Cool J[/lastfm] and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Busta Rhymes[/lastfm] on this remix that reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Prior to this, Biggie gained notoriety by appearing with [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Mary J. Blige[/lastfm]‘s remix to her single “Real Love” which peaked at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
#9 - Only You
This track by [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]112[/lastfm] is from right around 1995, when Biggie was working with his protege group [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Junior M.A.F.I.A.[/lastfm] The song “featured” Biggie but was felt by many as actually being HIS song, just by the way he delivered the powerful opening verse.
#8 - Warning
This video showed the angry and vengeful side of Biggie, ready for battle against those trying to mess with his money. Consider yourselves warned.
#7 - Get Money
Pro-tip: Biggie was also a CEO in his career, introducing the group [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Junior M.A.F.I.A.[/lastfm] featuring friend [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Lil Cease[/lastfm] and young [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Lil Kim[/lastfm].
#6 - One More Chance
In this song and video, Biggie really shows that his charm is in full effect as the women simply beg for his love. The video features his wife, [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Faith Evans[/lastfm], by his side with cameos from other famous divas.
#5 - Sky’s The Limit
This video was shot featuring mini versions of all the performers, including Biggie since he was deceased by this point.
#4 - Mo Money, Mo Problems
This video was also shot after Biggie’s death but his lyrics overshadowed the entire video, which is shared with [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Puff Daddy[/lastfm] and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Mase[/lastfm]. In the cut scene of the video, Biggie gave his definition of the song as basically describing where he was in his life.
#3 - Big Poppa
This track and video served as Biggie’s trademark persona as the “Don” of hip hop with his killer swag and lyrics. This video also showed that even as a big guy Biggie could get any lady he wanted… hear that Chunky?!
#2 - Hypnotize
“Hypnotize” served as Biggie’s final video before his death and it definitely seems like more of a movie than music video. The cool part about the video was the speed boats and car chase scenes that were unprecedented at that time.
#1 - Juicy
This classic video was shot mostly in B.I.G.’s hometown of Brooklyn, NY and is probably the most inspirational song ever made by our fallen friend. The raw lyrics and visuals of Biggie’s hometown have made this one of the best videos in hip hop history.
What’s YOUR favorite Notorious B.I.G. music video? Did we miss it here? Holla back in the comments section below…
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