June the 16th 1971, mama gave birth to a hell raising, heavenly son. Of course, that’s from the track Cradle to the Grave from the Thug Life album. With so much going on in the world today, it’s hard to imagine what Pac would be doing at the age of 47. The things he spoke up about is happening all the time from racial profiling, abusive cops and Donald Trump is the President. On my other site, you can check out my 2Pac B-Day Mix Volume 7, along with the other 6 in the article. Before 2Pac passed away, he dropped 6 albums and that includes Thug Life and Makaveli, which dropped a couple months after he passed. I’ll be ranking the 5 solo albums he released, which isn’t any remixes or anything like that. Peep the albums below and let me know your thoughts.
Since Pac is my personal G.O.A.T (Greatest of all Time), this is hard for me to do. 2Pacalypse Now was his first album and I absolutely love this one. It grew on me more the older I got because it’s a straight-up, hard hitting album. Brenda’s Got A Baby is considered an all-time classic hip hop joint, but this album was full of bangers. Besides Brenda’s Got A Baby, there were other classics that appeared on this album. Other standout tracks include Soulja’s Story, Young Black Male and Words of Wisdom. Trapped, Crooked Ass Nigga, If My Homies Calls, Rebel of the Underground and Part Time Mutha are other favorites. What’s even crazier is that Pac put this album together between the ages of 19-20. If you follow hip hop today, then you know that there’s no one that talk about the subject matter he did at that age.
2Pac All Eyez On Me
Some of you might be thinking, what the fuck? I know, some people thought All Eyez On Me is his best work and I’ll never argue that one. This was his Death Row Records debut after he was released from prison. This album was released during my senior year and yes, I’m a proud old head. Here’s a little story about the day it was released and how big of an event it was. The album went on sale first thing in the morning and about 4 of my friends came along to stand in line at the record shop to buy it. We all bought the album, which was 40 bucks at the time and we got to school late. My science teacher knew I’d show up late and asked if I bought the new Pac album.
I’m like of course, he said do you have it with you and I’m like yeah because I was going to listen to it on my Walkman. Mr. Smith took my CD and put it in the CD player in the lab and turned it up and we listened to Ambitionz Az a Ridah as a class. Everyone was in shock and he brought back my CD, then told me he’ll have to borrow that when I get a chance. Back to the All Eyez On Me album now. Like I said, this album is one of my all-time favorites, but Pac has so many classic even before he passed. The album featured everyone on Death Row, The Outlawz, his West Coast friends and even Redman and Method Man made an appearance. California Love was the anthem for the summer and still get the crowd going when it’s played.
The album has sold over 10 million records and it pretty much solidified Pac as a legend and all-time great. It was the 1997 Soul Train R&B/Soul or Rap album of the Year posthumously. Book 1 consisted of Ambitionz Az a Ridah, Got My Mind Made Up, How Do U Want It, 2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted, No More Pain, Life Goes On, Only God Can Judge Me, California Love and I Ain’t Mad at Cha. All those tracks are some of Pac’s dopest work. Book 2 had Shorty Wanna Be A Thug, Holla at Me, Wonder Why They Call U Bitch, When We Ride, Thug Passion, Picture Me Rollin, Ratha Be Ya Nigga, All Eyez On Me, Run Tha Streetz and Heaven Ain’t Hard 2 Find. All Eyez On Me is a certified classic and it’s crazy that three other albums are better in my opinion.
2Pac Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z
For me, this is probably the most underrated album in 2Pac’s collection. The original album titled was called Troublesome 21, but it was scrapped. Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z was a continuation of the 2Pacalypse Now album. The album went double platinum and he dropped more hits on it. Keep Ya Head and I Get Around are a couple more all-time hip hop classics for two distinct reasons. Keep Ya Head Up was an ode to women around the world and telling them to keep there head up. I Get Around was a party record and he talked about getting around sexually. Ice Cube, Ice-T, Treach, Live Squad, Mopreme, Digital Underground and Apache appeared on the album. Holler If Ya Hear Me, Last Wordz, Souljah’s Revenge, Guess Who’s Back, Representin 93, the title track, Streetz R Death Row, Papa’z Song and 5 Deadly Venoms are other standout tracks.
This is the album that was released about two months after his untimely passing. Makaveli The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory was finished in seven days in August of 1996. It took 3 days to write and record, then four days to mix the album. Originally it was meant to be an underground release, but when he died Death Row went ahead and dropped it. J. Cole has stated numerous times that this is one of his all-time favorite albums. The album is flawless from Bomb First (My Second Replay) to Against All Odds. Three singles were released off this album and they were Toss It Up, To Live in Die In L.A. and Hail Mary. The album features The Outlawz, Bad Azz from the LBC Crew, Val Young, Aaron Hall, Danny Boy and KCI & JoJo. Overall, it’s a classic album and Pac fans wanted more.
2Pac Me Against the World
I’ve bought this album I don’t know how many times. Honestly, this is my all-time favorite album, period! The first time I bought this album was on tape from the local mall the day it was released. Before I headed out, one of my best friends had called and asked was I going to get the Pac album. I was about 5 minutes from leaving the house and I said yeah and he said come scoop me up then. During that time, 2Pac was in prison. After purchasing the album, we immediately put the tape in and rode around all day and listened to it. If you’re someone that loves music and it touches your soul, you’ll understand when I say this. Some albums you can listen to and it touches your soul. With Me Against the World, this is the album that does that for me.
If I’m feeling bad, in a great mode or just emotionally not in my right mind, Me Against the World is that album. Over 20-something years later and now I’m 40-years-old, it still does it for me. Even now, my wife hears me playing this album and she asks, what’s wrong? From the beginning of the album where they talk about 2Pac news to Outlaw, the album is perfect to me. Me Against the World won the best rap album at the 1996 Soul Train Music Awards. Many consider this to be 2Pac’s most influential and most complete album ever. Dear Mama was the first single dropped off the album and so many people was bumping this in the school parking lot when it dropped. So Many Tears dropped after school and this was another all-time classic track from Pac. Temptations was the final single off the album.
If I Die 2Nite shows Pac lyrical ability as he kills that track. Me Against the World is the title track and he brought Dramacydal aka Edi Mean and Fatal to get some shine on this one. As mentioned before, So Many Tears was an instant classic. Temptations is another track that we all can relate to and he released a video for it. Records like Young Niggaz, Fuck the World and Outlaw showed his anger. Heavy in the Game featured his homie, Richie Rich whom he teamed with often. Lord Knows, It Ain’t Easy, Old School and Can U Get Away showed the cool side of Pac. Actually, don’t take my word for it just listen to the album below. Me Against the World is my favorite Pac album and my all-time favorite album.
Out of Pac’s 5 albums he released or put together while alive, which is our favorite? Did you know that Pac would’ve been 47-years-old today? Leave a comment below about anything related to the late, great 2Pac.