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Playlist of 25 best Biggie Smalls songs

@josephtaysom

Astonishingly, it’s now a quarter of a century since the world was robbed of Biggie Smalls’ larger than life presence after he was brutally murdered while in Los Angeles to shoot a music video. 

He was just 24 and had his whole life in front of him, making his passing all the more tragic. Not only did Biggie leave behind one of the most important collections of songs in the history of hip-hop, but the rapper was also a father to two young children, who tragically never got to grow up without his presence.

For many, Biggie will forever be the greatest rapper of all time, and no matter whoever follows in his wake, nobody else will possibly compete with his magical touch.

While The Notorious B.I.G. didn’t spend too long in the public eye, what he did during his years in the limelight will be hard to beat. He first started to gain momentum in 1992 after his mixtape caught the ears of the editor of The Source, and slowly, Biggie started to gain a name for himself in the New York scene.

The feature in the magazine was read by Sean Combs, who was then working in the A&R department at Uptown Records, and he immediately signed the rapper.

However, it wasn’t a match made in heaven at the label, and Biggie departed Uptown a year later to join Combs at his new endeavour, Bad Boy Records. From that point, the two of them began a legendary partnership, and in 1994, Biggie got his first shot of success when ‘Juicy’ became a hit ahead of the release of his debut album, Ready To Die.

A collaboration with Michael Jackson soon followed, and Biggie had truly become a force to be reckoned with who looked like he was capable of achieving anything. While he’d soon climbed to the top of the mountain pile, his name would soon get shrouded in controversy when he became the centre of the infamous East and West Coast rivalry.

In 1996, the feud escalated, and it took a nasty turn when Tupac Shakur made things personal on a diss track. The Los Angeles rapper was killed in September following a drive-by shooting, and Biggie has been intrinsically linked to the death ever since.  

Additionally, the recording of Biggie’s highly-anticipated second album was halted when he was involved in a car crash and spent months hospitalised before he started to walk with a cane. After almost two years, his second album, Life After Death, was finally scheduled for release. However, horrifically, Biggie wouldn’t live to see it released on March 25th.

He lost his life just a fortnight before its release, and his sophomore album was a horrifying reminder of Biggie’s ethereal talents. The record topped the Billboard chart and received universally positive reviews across the board. After Life After Death, there was no doubt he was a bonafide legend who successfully dragged hip-hop to unprecedented new heights.

In the decades after his death, there have been plentiful amounts of posthumous material released, and everything that Biggie touched in his career turned to gold. Below we’ve collated 25 of his finest moments on a playlist to remember a genuine hip-hop hero.

Biggie Smalls’ 25 best songs

  • ‘Party and Bullshit’
  • ‘Notorious Thugs’
  • ‘Ten Crack Commandments’
  • ‘Sky’s The Limit’
  • ‘Rap Phenomenon’
  • ‘Hypnotize’
  • ‘Big Poppa’
  • ‘Mo Money Mo Problems’
  • ‘Juicy’
  • ‘Gimme the Loot’
  • ‘Warning’
  • ‘Who Shot Ya’
  • ‘I Love The Dough’
  • ‘Going Back to Cali’
  • ‘Suicidal Thoughts’
  • ‘Nasty Girl’
  • ‘Come On’
  • ‘Notorious B.I.G.’
  • ‘Kick in the Door’
  • ‘The What’
  • ‘Everyday Struggle’
  • ‘One More Chance’
  • ‘1970 Somethin”
  • ‘Hold Ya Head’
  • ‘Dead Wrong’