» » Why Tupac Shakur Is Still Influential in Today’s Hip Hop Artists

Why Tupac Shakur Is Still Influential in Today’s Hip Hop Artists

Emily 29 de October del 2016 celebrities
The notorious rap artist known simply as Tupac or 2Pac was murdered in 1996. A rival gangster, still unknown to this day, shot him in a grudge match. Tragically, he was at the top of his career when he was taken from us. But today, twenty years after his death, Tupac Shakur remains one of the most iconic and influential artists in rap and hip hop music.

Tupac’s background

He was raised and educated in a family with a strong influence in the Black Panther Party. Both his mother and his godfather were important and very active members. His mother named him Tupac after an Incan warrior, José Gabriel Condorcanqui Tupac Amaru, who led a revolt against the Spanish Empire during the 17th century; a revolt that was bigger in every aspect than even the American Revolutionary War.

Since he was a young boy, Tupac began to emerge as a smart and sensitive kid. During his childhood, he started to keep a diary in which he wrote poetry. The Dramatic Arts Institute eagerly accepted him, where he learned ballet, performance and he developed his poetry.

Raised in a slum in Baltimore, a city with extreme violence, Tupac faced poverty, crime and police brutality on a daily basis. He quickly understood the media’s power to influence public opinion. He reflected on the images shown by mass media about Vietnam War to end the conflict, and wondered if he could address police brutality in the slums in his music. Maybe society would react to that, too.why-tupac-shakur-still-has-influence-in-todays-hip-hop-artists

Tupac as an icon

Tupac is still a very influential artist because he took on all the stereotypes of his time. He crashed into the American music industry at the end of the 80s, when the establishment demonized young Black men as the cause of crime and drug dealing that plagued the United States.

In contrast to the moral panic among the white middle class, Tupac appeared as an unexpected hero for the Black community at the end of the 20th century.  He became a kind of redeemer for many of those people who were accused of damaging and showing the worst of their community in cities such as L.A, Chicago, Atlanta and New York.

His lyrics were real poetry

The most remarkable thing about Tupac Shakur is that he was an extraordinary lyricist. His single “Dear Mama” was one of the first hip hop songs preserved by the US Library of Congress. Furthermore, his lyrics contained an emotional depth which contrasted beautifully with his gangster image. He was his own unique brand of artist; the industry couldn’t pigeonhole him as a gangster or as sensitive performer. Tupac was one of the last major artists in 20th century to mix weapons with lyrics.

Talking about the legendary 2Pac Shakur requires not only looking at his contributions to hip hop, but going deeper. This genre only focused on glorified violence and misogyny at the time. He broke with all stereotypes and used Black music to talk about freedom, love and equality, even though he was always surrounded by crime and law issues.

Thanks to his social activism and talent, Tupac could turn his fights for civil rights and complaints into hit music. And beyond that, he influenced other artists’ music and continues to even today. Nowadays, other hip hop artists such as Lil Wayne, 50 Cent, Snoop Dog and even Eminem can enjoy widespread popularity thanks to this pioneer who opened the path to success.

¡Déjanos tu opinión!