Tupac Shakur’s rigorous recording habits ensured that the late rapper would continue to make a musical impact, even in the afterlife. Since his death in 1996, fans have been treated to albums’ worth of posthumous ’Pac records, but the two records that leaked onto the Internet late Tuesday night are sure to cause a stir.
A far cry from Shakur’s uplifting tunes like “Changes” and ” ’Til the End of Time,” the two new tracks, “NY 87” and an alternate version of the little-known “Watch Yo Mouth,” take aim at East Coast rap artists like the Notorious B.I.G., Diddy, Mobb Deep, Nas, De La Soul and former ’Pac ally Dr. Dre.
Both songs appear to have been recorded circa 1996, when ’Pac was in a feud with Diddy’s Bad Boy record label and various other New York artists, including the Notorious B.I.G. It was around this time when Shakur recorded and released his two most famous dis tracks, “Hit ’Em Up” and “Against All Odds” from his The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory album, which he recorded under the alias Makaveli.
While “Watch Yo Mouth” is being touted as a new track, the song popped up online over two years ago. The version that was leaked this week has an alternate beat behind it, but the words remain the same. On it, the fiery Shakur begins with a barrage of Dr. Dre insults: “He ain’t made a beat in six years, swear he the sh–/ Won’t get no record sales suckin’ Nas’ di–.” Nasty Nas also gets thrown under the bus as ’Pac compares the two rappers’ record sales. De La Soul, Wendy Williams, Diddy and the Notorious B.I.G. all get ridiculed. Even in his lyrical tirade, the rapper attempts to downplay the much-hyped East Coast/ West Coast beef of the mid-1990s by chanting, “For my n—as on the east side” throughout the song.
“NY 87,” however, is a different story. Featuring raps by Tha Dogg Pound (Daz and Kurupt) and Threat, the bass-heavy dis track starts with a monologue from DJ Quik declaring, “Them n—–s on the East is the enemy.” Though the track is being labeled on the Net as a ’Pac track, it is Tha Dogg Pound who are prominently featured. Appearing only on the last verse, ’Pac doesn’t name-check any artists, but he does spit, “Move mother—-ers ’til they feel me/ It’s West Coast n—a, f— New York, now did everybody hear me?”
As of now it is unknown who released these tracks and why. The timing comes a little more than one week after Dexter Isaacs spoke to AllHipHop.com about his involvement in the 1994 robbery and non-fatal shooting of Shakur and after the hip-hop community celebrated what would’ve been Tupac’s 40th birthday on June 16. Many have speculated that the feud between Tupac and Biggie is what led to the deaths of both rappers. Those rumors have never been confirmed.
What do you think of these two posthumous Tupac songs? Tell us in the comments.