Artist: Alicia Keys
Pick: "Me & My Bitch," last verse:
"She helped me plan out my robberies on my enemies/ Didn't hesitate to squeeze, to get my life out of danger/ One day, she put 911 on the pager/ Had to call back, whether it's minor or major/ No response, the phone just rung/ Grab my vest, grab my gun, to find out the problem/ When I pulled up, police was on the scene /Had to make the U-turn, make sure my sh-- was clean/ Drove down the block, stashed the burner in the bushes/ Stepped to police with the shoves and the pushes/ It didn't take long before the tears start/ I saw my bitch dead, with the gunshot to the heart/ And I know it was meant for me/ I guess the n---as felt they had to kill the closest one to me ..."
Where to find it: Ready to Die (1994)
Why: "I know that sounds crazy coming from me," Keys admitted, "but I love how he was talking about real feelings and real emotion. I like the way [early in the song] he was able to talk about how they got into fights and she would throw his clothes out the window. And still, he was always there for her: They had this love relationship that you would only understand when you are really with somebody. And how the verse took it all the way to the point when she paged him, he tried to call her back but no answer: The killers set her up, took her out, and now she's gone. 'You killed my best friend.' I love that song. Biggie is one of my all-time favorites. We still miss him. He was definitely the greatest."