There’s a good chance you’ve heard a “Tupac is alive” joke more than once in your life (or heard it posed as a serious theory). The 20th anniversary of Tupac’s death was in September of last year, and March marks the 20th anniversary of the death of The Notorious B.I.G., aka Biggie or Biggie Smalls. The untimely, tragic shootings of the rap stars still weigh heavily on the music world.
To this day, both murders remain unsolved. Over the past two decades, so many conspiracy theories have been spread surrounding their deaths. And the cases are eerily similar in many ways.
Here’s everything you need to know about the deaths of Biggie and Tupac and the theories about their cases:
Tupac and Bigge used to be friends.
The hip-hop icons met in 1993. Tupac (real name: Tupac Shakur), though only a year older than Biggie (real name: Christopher Wallace), was something of a mentor to him. Tupac often gave Biggie career advice since he had a couple years more experience, and was more well-known when they met.
But then a violent rivalry started.
By the mid-1990s, the West Coast had proved itself in the hip-hop world with Death Row Records, the label that included Tupac, Dr. Dre, and Snoop Dogg.
Meanwhile, Biggie’s 1993 album “Ready to Die” helped give the East Coast label Bad Boy Records — Puff Daddy’s label — some recognition, along with Jay-Z’s “Reasonable Doubt.”
Tupac and his fans interpreted Biggie’s 1994 song “Who Shot Ya?“ as a diss track because he had been robbed and shot two months before the song’s release. The track’s lyrics described a situation very similar to what happened to Tupac.
In the 1996 song “Hit ‘Em Up,” Tupac struck back: He alluded to having an affair with Biggie’s wife, Faith Evans.
Source: LA Times
Tupac was murdered on September 7, 1996, in Las Vegas.
Tupac and Suge Knight — the founder of Death Row Records — were driving to a party around 11:15 p.m., after watching a Mike Tyson fight in Las Vegas. When they stopped their black BMW at a red light waiting for it to change, a white Cadillac pulled up next to them. Fourteen shots were fired, six of them hitting Tupac, who was in the passenger’s seat. One shot punctured his lung. Tupac died six days later, at only 25 years old.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department told Business Insider of Tupac’s murder in a statement, “The case is still open and under investigation. At this time, we have no additional updates to provide.”