This week started big…well, I mean B.I.G. The Hip Hop Nation as a whole – and New York especially – remembered the greatest MC of all time, the Notorious B.I.G., on the thirteenth anniversary of his death, March 9th.
There was Mister Cee’s annual B.I.G. tribute, and Puffy and friends and fam journeyed to Brooklyn to celebrate BK’s finest at what I heard was a completely off the hook party (and I get to call him Puffy on this post because he reverted back to that moniker in honor of B.I.G this week). But those aren’t the tributes I want to talk about.
You know, social networking (blogging, Facebook, twitter, etc) has revolutionized the way that people share and acknowledge events, experiences and monumental moments. This hits me during every big sporting event, or awards show, or other happening that catches collective attention, but it especially hit me on Tuesday. Almost everyone I know spent the day posting Biggie videos, Biggie photos, and Biggie lyrics. (By the way, you can gain a good bit of insight into a person by what BIG lyrics they post!). #RIPBIG was a trending topic on twitter almost immediately after midnight. But what was especially interesting to see/read were the first hand accounts and memories shared by people who had personally known Big, had been part of that era or part of his story in some way.
One former entertainment attorney talked about the day of the funeral, the somber mood, how much love Brooklyn showed, and my favorite quote “I will always remember how Lil Kim was THAT funeral chick.” Apparel exec Phil Pabon, who was VP of Marketing at Enyce at the time of Big’s death, recalled how he ran into the Beverly Center in LA to grab something to wear to a party, and saw Big in there shopping, just chillin’. When he asked Big why he didn’t have security with him with so much beef on the West Coast, Big told him “If it’s my time, it’s my time.” Writer and blogger Big Ced shared that his first interview ever was with Biggie, and at the time of the interview Big said that he wouldn’t be alive in 10 years.
Several people recounted the B.I.G. MACK promo campaign: pushing Craig Mack’s Project: Funk Da World and Biggie’s Ready To Die, the print ad featured Big, Puff and Mack behind the counter of a fast food restaurant with the tag line “Serving Up The Hottest Platters On The Street.” At the same time the promotion launched, packages landed on tastemaker’s desks with a styrofoam burger container (yeah, styrofoam. This was pre-environmentally conscious paper wrapping for fast food) with B.I.G. MACK on the top, and when you opened it, the Biggie promo cassette (yes, cassette. Again, different era) was on one side, and the Craig Mack cassette on the other. Dope. I need to say here that a lot of people also used this opportunity to give Puffy props for his hustle and innovation and big up the Bad Boy movement, and be clear: it was an actual movement.
Then there’s my boy Slim Pic