There isn’t a single song on Tyga‘s upcoming Hotel California that sparks more curiosity than “Hit ‘Em Up.” Not only does the selection borrow its name from Tupac‘s scathing 1996 dis track, but ‘Pac is also featured on the unheard track, leading many to believe that T-Raw went in and remade the battle-tested classic.
“A lot of people think it’s a remake of ‘Hit ‘Em Up,’ his song — which it’s not a remake, it’s original,” Tyga told MTV News when we visited the set of his “Molly” video in Los Angeles last week.
The original “Hit ‘Em Up” was a jaw-dropping, rap assault on the Notorious B.I.G., where ‘Pac alleged to have slept with Biggie’s wife and made rhythmic threats on his life. To this day, rappers still follow ‘Pac’s beef blueprint, but Tyga stops short of labeling his version a dis record — sort of. “When you’re talking about ‘Hit ‘Em Up’ you ain’t really dissing nobody, but you lettin’ it be known that you don’t rock with certain people,” he explained confirming that the track will have some sort of contention.
Tyga’s “Hit ‘Em Up” features Jadakiss as well, as a posthumous Tupac performance, but originally the Young Money MC envisioned another collaborator. “I wanted Nicki to be on the song at first and then we never did it, so then I went back to the song later,” he revealed.
Once Tyga fleshed out the track some more, he decided to go with the veteran New York lyricist Jadakiss, who coincidentally was signed to Diddy’s Bad Boy record label in the 1990s during the tail end of the Biggie and ‘Pac feud.
“I sent it to Jadakiss and after that I was done with the song and then I had came across some ‘Pac vocals from a friend,” Tyga continued, detailing the process on how his song came together. “I was like, ‘Man this would be dope,’ but I didn’t really know how to use it properly.”
Tyga eventually figured out how to incorporate the Shakur sample, but wouldn’t reveal exactly how he did it, leaving us to have to wait until April 9 when Hotel California is released. “When people hear it they’re gonna think it’s real clever and they’re gonna really respect it,” he promised.
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