About 2Pac

Simply put, the most polarizing figure in Hip Hop history, and it’s not even close.  He grew up in Harlem in a home where he was surrounded by people with radical beliefs, and even more radical ways of acting out on those beliefs.  In 1986, he was moved to Maryland and started attending the Baltimore School for the Arts, and studied not only poetry, but ballet, acting, and jazz.  He would go on to act in many plays while attending the school, which helped develop thespian skills that would come in handy later when he starred in films such as Juice, Poetic Justice, and Above the Rim.  Shakur had his share of run-ins with the law, and was very instrumental in the East Coast-West Coast rivalry that led to a lot of violence in the mid-90’s.  But that was only one side of ‘Pac, as his music is also some of the most uplifting and inspirational in the history of the genre.  He had millions of intensely loyal fans, who helped him reach over 75 million records sold.  In 1996, at the age of 35 he was fatally wounded as part of a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas, NV.  He posthumously narrated a documentary called Resurrection about his own life in 2003, and there is currently a biopic film in production about his life.

Facts Only

  • He got his start as a backup dancer for the group Digital Underground.
  • He became very close friends with Jada Pinkett Smith (then just Jada Pinkett) while in school in MD.
  • When he died it was discovered his birth name was actually Lesane Parish Crooks, though unconfirmed by family.
  • Shakur was an avid Shakespeare reader, and said it taught him a lot about gang mentality.
  • He publicly denounced interracial marriage on multiple occasions.
  • He was nominated for 7 Grammy awards, 3 MTV VMA awards, and 1 Oscar without winning.


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