The Tupac Top 5

In pop culture on September 13, 2010 at 8:05 pm

Today marks the 14th anniversary of the death of one of hip hop’s finest, Tupac Shakur. Whether they loved him or hated him, even his most bitter rivals respected him.

Shakur’s work speaks for itself. History may very well brand him as the voice of his generation, and indeed, his music spoke to everyone. I’ve never been shot, never shot anyone, grew up poor but never in the projects, and yet his songs resonate with me with as though he were speaking direct to me.

I present my top 5 Tupac songs of all time. The funny thing is, you could probably remove my top 5 and still field a strong second list. He had that many hits.

God bless the dead.

5) Hit ‘Em Up – Arguably the most vicious, most personal diss track ever made, Hit ‘Em Up single handedly kicked off the whole East Coast/West Coast hip hip feud of the 1990s. You could argue that this song should be rated higher, but 2 key factors force me to rank it lower on my list. First, it has the Outlawz on it, and let’s face it…they suck. Second, and most importantly (to me) this song kicked off the events that ultimately led to his death. If your masterpiece ends you, it loses points in my book. Still, a classic track.

4) So Many Tears – really highlights Tupac’s struggle with what his life had brought. Also introduced the world to the insightful, poetic nature of ‘Pac. Most impressive to me, though, is that he’s really not rapping. It’s almost as though he is baring bits of his soul here.

3) Keep Ya Head Up – it is incredible how relevant this song is, even today (14 years later). Try not to bob your head…it’s impossible

2) 2 of Amerikaz most Wanted – Tupac and Snoop continued their attack on Biggie and the East Coast in this classic. The duo flows seamlessly together in one of more sinister Tupac tracks. This song is lyrically ridiculous

And Number 1 (drumroll, please) Dear Mama – Simply put, I love this song. Unapologetic in its objective, just saying “thank you” to the woman who brought him into this world is enough.


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