Born: June 16, 1971, New York, New York | Successful For: Rapper, Activist, Poet, Actor | Zodiac Sign: Gemini
What Made Tupac So Inspiring:
Tupac Had A Strong Underlying Purpose For What He Represented & Believed:
No one can deny it, 2pac was much more than just a musician or actor, he was revolutionary, and he was an activist who pushed for social change. Whether he vocalised it in interviews or sang about it in his lyrics – he was an advocate for the poor and he stood up for many issues from violence and racism to social conflicts and injustice, that people like himself faced growing up in the ghetto’s. He was always trying to make a bold statement and prove how the system needed to change. He stood for much more than just his music. Tupac Amaru Shakur was destined to be a voice that was heard; after all he was named after a Peruvian revolutionary figure who was executed for leading an up rise. His mother was a strong influence in his life; she was also an active member of the Black Panther Party. He grew up in a household full of people involved with the Black Liberation Army and learned a lot about radical politics, therefore he was heavily inspired to become a leader and activist himself. Growing up - he was known to teachers as a very bright student who had a love fro literature - he read everything from Eastern religions to Encyclopaedia's. From songs like 'Brenda’s got a baby', 'Keep Ya Head Up' and 'Changes', it’s clear 2pac’s initial intent was to educate people on real issues that mattered to him and people close to him. However, many argue that he became so fixated on the problem’s around him that it infected him internally, stemming to the downfall of the bright star who became the victim of the social struggles he was fighting so heavily to fix. Nonetheless, Tupac's legacy will remain forever, and the positive impact he created truly changed many lives and sparked a ripple effect. “We gotta make a change. It’s time for us as a people to start making some changes. Let’s change the way we eat, let’s change the way we live and let’s change the way we treat each other. You see the old way wasn’t working so it’s on us, to do what we gotta do to survive.”
Tupac Had An Unmatchable Work Ethic And True Passion For What He Did:
From early on, Tupac showed a tremendous amount of interest in the arts – he enjoyed poetry, acting and even ballet dancing. As a kid, he dreamed of becoming a Shakespearean actor and admired his work. At just 12 years old he enrolled at Harlem’s 127th Street Repertory Ensemble where he was a cast character in the play A Raisin In The Sun where he performed at the Apollo Theatre. He was well known for being an avid reader who was curious of the world around him. The family eventually moved to Baltimore and he would soon transfer to a school for the arts. He began finding his groove as he studied poetry, jazz and ballet and he would perform in Shakespeare plays. Looking hindsight, 2pac once stated “The reason why I could get into acting was because it takes nothing to get out of who I am and go into somebody else.” It was a clear gift of his, and he enjoyed it immensely. Soon enough, he discovered rap music (a blend of poetry and music) and was known to win many competitions in school. He was offered a contract, but his mother declined. When the family relocated to California, Tupac would become a member of the drama department and acted in several performances. In one of his English classes he wrote a profound statement that foreshadowed much of his future to come saying “our raps not the sorry-story raps everyone is so tired of. They are about what happens in the real world. Our goal is [to] have people relate to our raps, making it easier to see what really is happening out there. Even more important, what we may do to better our world.” The paper was titled “Conquering All Obstacles.” With a gut wrenching tug, he would begin attending poetry classes. This bold step enabled him to make big connections which quickly led him in the direction to become a backup dancer with Digital Underground, a hip hop group. With a bulldog tenacity and a powerful work ethic, Tupac would impress the right people to finally get his own solo career going. He would write all of his own songs, and he’d record non-stop as many critically acclaimed musicians would consider him the hardest working MC in the game. In a short amount of years being famous, he recorded nearly 20 albums, all while being an actor in big films and giving powerful speeches too.
2Pac Rose Up Through Adversity, Like A Rose That Grew Through Concrete With Damaged Pedals:
“During your life, never stop dreaming. No one can take away your dreams.” Growing up with an absent father was the start of struggle for 2pac. His mother was a Black Panther who had been in and out of jail. In fact, she was in jail for bombing charges at the time of pregnancy. Alongside his mother and step sister, they grew up in poverty – moving from homeless shelters to being on continuous welfare and juggling from city to city and coast to coast. Because of the unstable environment, it was difficult for Tupac to make friends; he was fairly reserved and didn’t really fit in. He considered himself an outcast, other kids found him weird – they didn’t understand his interests of poetry and ballet, and they didn’t like his name or the way he looked. He found his therapy in poetry and writing in his diary. Eventually though, he felt the need to pretend to be a tough guy in order to make friends. As he grew into an MC in Baltimore, his first raps were about gun control – after a fatal shooting occurred with one of his friend’s. A few years later, his mother became addicted to crack and it was becoming a challenge for her to find work – she moved the family to California to live with a family friend. He later claimed this move was where he got off track – he would get in frequent trouble with cops for playing loud music. Eventually he moved in with a neighbourhood friend where he began to sell drugs occasionally. Tupac was a relentless soul however, and he had enough drive from within to make a difference. Thankfully he had made some real friends and a powerful mother who cared for him and his talents and pushed him to pursue his career. “My mama always used to tell me: 'If you can't find somethin' to live for, you best find somethin' to die for.” From absolute rough childhood experiences and extreme poverty and isolation, 2pac was able to rise out from the adversity with a determined mind and a stronger inner force. “Take ones adversity. Learn from their misfortune. Learn from their pain. Believe in something. Believe in yourself. Turn adversity into ambition.”
"I'm not saying I'm gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world".
– Quote by Tupac Shakur
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