Tupac Amaru Shakur, popularly know as 2Pac is arguably the best hip-hop artists of time. 2Pac has been named as the greatest artist by the prestigious Rolling Stone as he entertained the masses being an actor, songwriter and a rapper making over 75 million in record sales which got his name in the “Guinness Book of World Records”.
Today is the birthday of the legendary rapper who made sure that his music reaches the audience in a way that no other artist was doing at that time, writing songs about the hardships, racism and violence faced by the African-American society.
Making a list of his Top Ten songs would not do justice to the legacy he created with his music but here is the list for people who would like to add some real hip-hop to their playlists.
“Changes” was released October 13, 1998. This single was one of many unreleased tracks made public after his death. 2Pac references his strong lyrics to having no change in poverty, violence, gang violence, police brutality, and the war on drugs in the ghetto. This single was nominated for the Best Rap Solo Performance at the Grammy Awards of 2000.
“Dear Mama” was released February 21, 1995 from the album Me Against the World. 2Pac tributes this song to his mother. This song is an anthem to single mother’s struggling in poverty, trying to raise their children while working hard and struggling with their own addictions. This lyrically mastered song was added to the National Recording Registry in the Library of Congress.
“Trapped” was released September 25, 1991. 2Pac’s lyrics references him being tired of getting harassed, abused and profiled by police. This single was featured on the 2Pac’s Greatest Hits album in 1998.
“California Love” was released December 28, 1995, from the album All Eyez on Me. This upbeat party hip-hop song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. This song highlights the fulfilled party flavor California has and the love 2Pac and Dr. Dre embraced in the West Coast state.
“So Many Tears” was released June 13, 1995. 2Pac reflects on his life and the pain and suffering he’s been through. With the harmonica sounds from Stevie Wonder’s song “That Girl” the melody of the song gives a great flavor that coincides with the strong lyrics of 2Pac and how he has shed so many tears losing peers to violence.
“Keep Ya Head Up” was released February 16. 1993. This song is another woman anthem song that embeds lyrics that embraces women and points out how hard it is being a woman and a mother. This song is well versed and meant to uplift mothers and women all over the world.
“Me Against The World” was released March 14, 1995. This single was released while 2Pac was imprisoned. The melodic rap song tells a story about 2Pac’s troubled life and how he has dealt with the struggles he had to endure growing up.
“Brenda’s Got A Baby” was released October 20, 1991 from the album 2Pacalypse Now. This song was inspired by a true experience of a young twelve year old girl who became pregnant and threw the baby in the trash compactor. The lyrics of the song give heartfelt details of how the twelve year old could not support her baby. The song points out the hardships of the young girl in the ghetto and points out the difficulties she faced when she didn’t get support from the baby’s father or her family. The slow mellow and melodic rap song is juxtaposed against lyrics that powerfully and give the world a realistic view of what poverty looks like.
“I Ain’t Mad At Cha” was released October 12, 1995 from the album All Eyez on Me. This flavorful hip-hop song allows 2Pac to lyrically go down memory lane of how he used to be, and how some of his friends converted to live different lifestyles that does not involve the things they use to do as friends. As 2Pac reminisces, he states he understands and he is not mad at them for thinking differently about him. This song was released shortly after his death in 1996.
“Thugs Mansion” relays 2Pac’s depiction of a place where thugs go after they pass away. His lyrics point out how he would want to be in a place of happiness and peace and where “thugs” can be themselves. He’d like to find himself in the “Thugs Mansion” after he passes away.”