How this video only has 939 views on YouTube is unreal.
In 1993, The Notorious B.I.G. had yet to morph into the crossover superstar the world would later come to adopt him as. That doesn’t mean his 21st birthday party in Brooklyn was anything less than – what the kids coin now as – “turnt up.” In providing some sort of time significance, mentally grasp these four facts.
— The first World Trade Center bombing wasn’t even three months old yet.
— The vibes in New York were so festive following B.I.G. becoming old enough to legally drink, over the course of the next eight days, the Knicks would take a 2-0 series lead on the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference Finals. Then, the bottom fell out. Michael Jordan’s now iconic 54-point middle finger to the New York media would happen 10 days following said footage.
— “Party & Bullshit” wasn’t officially released as a single until a month later.
— Ready To Die wouldn’t hit shelves for another 480 days on September 13, 1994, which would be the same day Tupac died three years later. Eerie, right?
Anywho, 20 years ago today at The Arena in his hometown of Brooklyn, B.I.G. and Puffy rocked to presumably a small, yet intense crowd. Lord Finesse, Old Dirty Bastard and Mr. Cheeks all show up as guests in what’ll result in a Hip-Hop time warp. After watching Biggie rock out on his own to start the clip, arguably the funniest moments come when witnessing him zone out and dance as others grace the stage – especially during ODB’s set.
There’s really nothing left to say about B.I.G. that hasn’t already been etched into e-stone. The man was an icon who birthed only two albums during his lifetime, yet touched an infinite amount of souls during his short time on Earth and even shorter duration in the spotlight. Vintage and rare videos such as these help paint a better picture of who Chris Wallace was before he became, in the eyes of many, the greatest to ever breathe air into microphones.
Like Pac and his own hail of gunfire, Hip-Hop was robbed of a God-knows-how-many classic albums, features and moments from T’yanna and CJ’s pops. What a bullet cannot erase regardless of how many are loaded in the clip, however, are the memories. And as long as those remain attached to our collective ribcages, B.I.G., Pac or anyone for that matter never truly perished to begin with.
Happy 41st birthday, Frank.
Previously: “Being Broke At 30 Give A N*gga The Chills…”