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Tupac Shakur

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Interscope, Out Da Gutta, Death Row, Makaveli, Major Label
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Tupac Amaru Shakur was a legend is he dead ?
Me, Myself, and I
Tupac Amaru Shakur (June 16, 1971 – September 13, 1996), also known by his stage names 2Pac, Makaveli, Black Haze (an alias used in an unreleased 17 CD mixtape collection under the name Makaveli) or simply Pac, was an American rapper. In addition to his status as a top-selling recording artist, Shakur was a successful film actor and a prominent social activist. He is recognized in the Guinness Book of World Records as the highest-selling rap artist, with over 75,000,000 albums sold worldwide, including over 50,000,000 in the United States alone.[2] Most of Shakur's songs are about growing up around violence and hardship in ghettos, racism, problems in society, and sometimes conflicts with other rappers. Shakur's work is known for advocating political, economic, social, and racial equality as well as his raw descriptions of violence, drug and alcohol abuse, and conflicts with the law. Many fans, critics, and industry insiders rank him as one of the greatest rappers ever.[3][4]

Shakur was initially a roadie and backup dancer for the alternative hip hop group Digital Underground. Shakur's debut album, 2Pacalypse Now, gained critical recognition and backlash for its controversial lyrics. Shakur became the target of lawsuits and experienced other legal problems. Later, he was shot five times and robbed in a recording studio lobby in Manhattan, New York City, New York. Following the occurrence, Shakur grew suspicious that other figures in the rap industry had prior knowledge of the incident and did not warn him; the controversy helped spark the East Coast-West Coast hip hop rivalry. After serving eleven months of his sentence for sexual abuse, Shakur was released from prison on an appeal financed by Marion "Suge" Knight, the CEO of Death Row Records. In exchange for Knight's assistance, Shakur agreed to release three records under the Death Row label. Shakur's fifth record, the first double-disc release in hip hop history All Eyez on Me, counted as two albums.

On September 7, 1996, Shakur was shot four times in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada, and died six days later of respiratory failure and cardiac arrest at the University Medical Center.

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  • September 1996 shooting

    On the night of September 7, 1996, Shakur attended the Mike Tyson - Bruce Seldon boxing match at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. After leaving the match, one of Suge Knight's associates spotted 21 year-old Orlando "Baby Lane" Anderson, a member of the Southside Crips, in the MGM Grand lobby and had Shakur aware. Shakur immediately rushed Anderson and knocked him to the ground. Shakur's entourage, as well as Knight and his followers assisted in assaulting Anderson. The fight was captured on the hotel's video surveillance. A few weeks earlier, Anderson and a group of Crips robbed a member of Death Row's entourage in a Foot Locker store, precipitating Shakur's onset. After the brawl, Shakur went to rendezvous with Knight to go to Death Row-owned Club 662 (now known as restaurant/club Seven). He rode in Knight's 1996 black BMW 750i sedan as part of a larger convoy with some of Shakur's friends, Outlawz, and bodyguards.

    At 10:55 p.m., while paused at a red light, Shakur rolled down his window and a photographer took his photo.[38] At around 11:00-11:05 p.m., they were halted on Las Vegas Blvd. by Metro bicycle cops for playing the car stereo too loud and not having license plates. The plates were then found in the trunk of Knight's vehicle; they were released without being fined a few minutes later.[39][38] At about 11:10 p.m., while stopped at a red light at Flamingo Road near the intersection of Koval Lane in front of the Maxim Hotel, a vehicle occupied by two women pulled up on their right side. Shakur, who was standing up through the sunroof, exchanged words with the two women, and invited them to go to Club 662.[38] At approximately 11:15 p.m., a white, four-door, late-model, Cadillac driven by unknown person(s) pulled up to the sedan's right side, rolled down one of the windows, and rapidly fired around twelve to thirteen shots at Shakur. He was struck by four rounds; one hit him in the chest, the pelvis, and his right hand and thigh.[40][38] One of the rounds apparently ricocheted into Shakur's right lung.[41] Knight was hit in the head by shrapnel, though it is thought that a bullet grazed him.[42] According to Knight, a bullet from the gunfire had been lodged in his skull, but medical reports later contradicted this statement.[43]

    At the time of the drive-by, Shakur was riding alongside Knight, with his bodyguard following behind in a vehicle belonging to Kidada Jones, Shakur's then-fiancée. The bodyguard, Frank Alexander, stated that when he was about to ride along with the rapper in Knight's car, Shakur asked him to drive Kidada Jones' car instead just in case they were too drunk and needed additional vehicles from Club 662 back to the hotel. Shortly after the assault, the bodyguard reported in his documentary, Before I Wake, that one of the convoy's cars drove off after the assailant but he never heard back from the occupants.

    After arriving on the scene, police and paramedics took Knight and a fatally wounded Shakur to the University Medical Center. According to an interview with one of Shakur's closest friends and music video director Gobi, while at the hospital, he received news from a Death Row marketing employee that the shooters had called the record label and were sending death threats aimed at Shakur, claiming that they were going there to "finish him off".[44] Upon hearing this, Gobi immediately alerted the Las Vegas police, but the police claimed they were understaffed and no one could be sent.[44] Nonetheless, the shooters never arrived.[44] At the hospital, Shakur was in and out of consciousness; heavily sedated, breathed through a ventilator and respirator, was placed on life support machines, and was ultimately put under a barbiturate-induced coma after repeatedly trying to get out of the bed.[45][44][40]

    Despite having been resuscitated in a trauma center and surviving a multitude of surgeries (as well the removal of a failed right lung), Shakur had gotten through the critical phase of th

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  • Rapping career

    Shakur's professional entertainment career began in the early 1990s, when he debuted his rapping skills on "Same Song" from the Digital Underground album This is an EP Release. He first appeared in the music video for "Same Song". After his rap debut, Shakur performed with Digital Underground again on the album Sons Of The P. Later, he released his first solo album, 2Pacalypse Now. Initially he had trouble marketing his solo debut, but Interscope Records' executives Ted Field and Tom Whalley eventually agreed to distribute the record.

    Shakur claimed his first album was aimed at the problems facing young black males, but it was publicly criticized for its graphic language and images of violence by and against law enforcement.[16] In one instance, a young man claimed his killing of a Texas-based trooper was influenced by the album. Former Vice President Dan Quayle publicly denounced the album as having "no place in our society".[17] 2Pacalypse Now did not do as well on the charts as future albums, spawning no top ten hits. His second record, Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z., was released in 1993. The album, mostly produced by Randy "Stretch" Walker (Shakur's closest friend and associate at the time) and the Live Squad, generated two hits, "Keep Ya Head Up" and "I Get Around", the latter featuring guest appearances by Shock G and Money-B of the Digital Underground.

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  • Early life

    Tupac Amaru Shakur was born in the East Harlem section of Manhattan in New York City.[4] He was named after Túpac Amaru II, an Incan revolutionary who led an indigenous uprising against Spain and subsequently received capital punishment. His mother, Afeni Shakur, was an active member of the Black Panther Party in New York in the late 1960s and early 1970s; Shakur was born just one month after her acquittal on more than 150 charges of "Conspiracy against the United States government and New York landmarks" in the New York Panther 21 court case.[5] Although officially unconfirmed by the Shakur family,[6] several sources list his birth name as either "Parish Lesane Crooks"[7] or "Lesane Parish Crooks".[8] Afeni feared her enemies would attack her son, and disguised their relation using a different last name, only to change it three months[7] or a year later, following her marriage to Mutulu Shakur.

    Struggle and incarceration surrounded Shakur from an early age. His godfather, Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt, a high ranking Black Panther, was convicted of murdering a school teacher during a 1968 robbery, although his sentence was later overturned. His stepfather, Mutulu, spent four years at large on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list beginning in 1982, when Shakur was a pre-teen. Mutulu was wanted in part for having helped his sister Assata Shakur (also known as Joanne Chesimard), Tupac's godmother, to escape from a penitentiary in New Jersey, where she had been incarcerated for allegedly shooting a state trooper to death in 1973. Mutulu was caught in 1986 and imprisoned for the robbery of a Brinks armored truck in which two police officers and a guard were killed.[9] Tupac had a half-sister, Sekyiwa, two years his junior, and an older stepbrother, Mopreme "Komani" Shakur, who appeared on many of his recordings.

    At the age of twelve, Shakur enrolled in Harlem's famous "127th Street Ensemble." His first major role with this acting troupe was as Travis in A Raisin in the Sun. In 1984, his family relocated to Baltimore, Maryland,[10] After completing his second year at Paul Lawrence Dunbar High School he transferred to the Baltimore School for the Arts, where he studied acting, poetry, jazz, and ballet. He performed in Shakespeare plays, and in the role of the Mouse King in The Nutcracker.[9] Shakur, accompanied by one of his friends, Dana "Mouse" Smith, as his beatbox, won most of the many rap competitions that he participated in and was considered to be the best rapper in his school.[11] Although he lacked trendy clothing, he was one of the most popular kids in his school because of his sense of humor, superior rapping skills, and ability to mix in with all crowds.[12] He developed a close friendship with a young Jada Pinkett (later Jada Pinkett Smith) that lasted until Shakur's death. In the documentary Tupac: Resurrection, Shakur says, "Jada is my heart. She will be my friend for my whole life," and Smith calls Shakur "one of my best friends. He was like a brother. It was beyond friendship for us. The type of relationship we had, you only get that once in a lifetime." A poem written by Shakur titled "Jada" appears in his book, The Rose That Grew From Concrete, which also includes a poem dedicated to Smith called "The Tears in Cupid's Eyes".

    In June 1988, Shakur and his family moved once again, this time to Marin City, California, where he attended Tamalpais High School. He joined the Ensemble Theater Company (ETC) to pursue his career in entertainment. His mother's crack addiction led him to move into Leila Steinberg's home with his friend Ray Luv at the age of seventeen and he eventually dropped out of high school. Leila Steinberg acted as a literary mentor to Shakur, an avid reader. Steinberg has kept copies of the books that he read, which include J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, Jamaica Kincaid's At the Bottom of the River, Herman Melville's Moby-Dick, Eileen Southern's Music of Black Americans, and the feminist wri

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