Twenty-one years ago, The Notorious B.I.G. was tragically murdered at the age of twenty-four. While rightfully regarded as a legend, the harsh reality of the situation finds an artist gone too soon. His debut album Ready To Die remains a quintessential piece of hip-hop lore, while his somewhat posthumous Life After Death is held to a similar regard. One need only look at his most prominent singles to understand the scope of his versatility. "Hypnotize." "Juicy." "Mo Money Mo Problems." "Victory." "Notorious Thugs." Despite the fact that he died with two studio albums under his belt, his catalog remains deeper than countless active rappers. 

The Notorious B.I.G.'s influence can still be felt to this day, and fans and artists alike continue to pay respects to the fallen icon. While his discography can no doubt be discussed at length, consider this post a place to pay your respects to the Notorious one. I first heard Big though "Hypnotize," and was captivated by his effortless flow and seemingly unparalleled charisma. From that point on, I became obsessed with "Notorious Thugs," which to this day remains a personal favorite Big track. It's hard to imagine what might have happened should Big have been spared on that fateful day. He was only twenty-four years old; for all we know, his true potential was yet to be reached.

Big was equally hilarious and menacing, humble and braggadocious, depraved and sensitive. Technically, his flow set the bar for rappers across the globe, and plenty of rapper aspirants could stand to learn a thing or two from Big Poppa. Rest in peace, B.I.G. The hip-hop community still remembers.