The Notorious B.I.G.’s rhymes and rhythms illuminated the world of hip-hop, asserting personality and colour into the purely irresistible genre that was bubbling under the surface. Biggie’s music had a charm to it that made your favourite rapper fall in love with the world of hip-hop. Below, we’re picking delivering a 159-track playlist that captures the great man’s entire discography.
Sadly, considering his legacy, Biggie’s death is often talked about more than his life. However, this feature celebrates his stellar work and a career that was cut painfully short — just a fortnight before his 25th birthday in 1997. While most rappers are yet to hit their stride at that age, and Biggie may have only had two albums under his belt, both are held in the same breath as Nas’ Illmatic or Kanye West’s College Dropout when it comes to hip-hop classic foundations.
Recently, the Brooklyn-native rapper was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a moment that further established his legacy. At the time, Diddy, who famously signed Biggie to his label Bad Boy Records in 1993, perfectly summarised his talents: “Big just wanted to be biggest, he wanted to be the best, he wanted to have influence and impact people in a positive way, and that clearly has been done all over the world.”
Adding: “Nobody has come close to the way Biggie sounds, to the way he raps, to the frequency that he hits. Tonight we are inducting the greatest rapper of all time into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Notorious B.I.G. representing Brooklyn, New York, we up in here.”
Nas, who helped induct Biggie alongside Diddy, powerfully added: “Rap music is all about who’s gonna be the king. The West Coast, they was selling millions of records, and before Big, I felt like there was only so far New York rap could go as far as sales. Biggie changed all of that.”
Below we look at his complete discography, not only the two albums that were delivered while Biggie was still alive, notably his debut Ready to Die, but the albums that have been made out of his recordings since his passing. With his most recent record Duets: The Final Chapter arriving in recent years, the rapper is still as pivotal today as his debut was when it first hit the airwaves.
Below, find a complete discography playlist of The Notorious B.I.G.