We have all played the what if game when we lose people with so much potential. While Biggie released enough music to have some people consider him the greatest rapper of all time, there was still so much left of a life that ended after only 24 years. In this exercise we take a look at what might have been as we sit down with the late, great Notorious B.I.G.
Planet Ill:You look like you’ve lost some more weight. Pretty soon we won’t be able to call you Biggie anymore.
B.I.G.: Nah, never that. Just trying to get healthy you know? Doc told me I needed to switch up my diet a little bit and stop hitting the trees or whatever so I could be around for my kids.
Planet Ill:Well it looks like the diet has definitely been working. But have you really stopped smoking weed?
B.I.G.: Nah, I wouldn’t say all that but I don’t smoke like I used too. I had to cut down before something happened. I figured I could at least try to meet my doctors half way.
Planet Ill:You just wrapped up your It Was All a Dream our. How was that experience for you?
B.I.G.: Crazy. I think we did about fifteen cities in thirteen days on that last leg.
Planet Ill:How did the idea for It Was All a Dream come about?
B.I.G.: It Was All a Dream started off for the fans you know what I’m saying? We had an idea to get a bunch of artists together on one stage for one night like a dream concert and then it just took on a life of its own. It kept getting bigger and better and now we do it every year.
Planet Ill:So now that the tour is over what’s next for B.I.G.?
B.I.G.: Just putting the finishing touches on the new album and all that. Making sure we cook it up right. It’s been a minute since me and Puff sat down and worked on a solo project you know? It feels good to get that familiarity back with my man Diddy.
Planet Ill:How was getting back in the studio with Puffy after all this time?
B.I.G.: It was real cool like we never missed a beat you know what I’m saying? And it’s ill because over the years as we’ve both grown and matured or whatever, we never lost that chemistry that we had in the studio. So we can still make that magic happen, you know?
Planet Ill:Almost 15 years ago there was an attempt on your life that took place on March 9, 1997. What are your feelings about that?
B.I.G. I ain’t really got much to say about that except I’m just grateful to be here. I’m just blessed to be alive you know what I’m saying? There’s a lot of dudes ain’t with us no more, and I could have ended up with them. Emceeing in the clouds or whatever. It’s just a blessing to be here and to be done with all the bullshit you know?
Planet Ill:Is that why you still do shows in LA?
B.I.G.: I do shows in LA because I’ve always done shows in LA and I live in LA. What people don’t understand about all that drama from way back is that I never had any problems with LA. That was just some media bullshit.
Planet Ill:Suge Knight is up for parole soon do you have any thoughts on that?
B.I.G.: Nah I don’t really got no thoughts on Duke. I’m just happy that Mrs. Shakur can finally have some peace.
Planet Ill:Is it true you paid her attorney fees and helped her get those Death Row masters for her son’s estate?
B.I.G.: I don’t really like to get into all that. Except to say that we’re always going to be connected you know what I’m saying? Me and duke were friends before the bullshit and that’s what matters most to me. The crazy thing is if those niggas didn’t get caught trying to come at me 15 years ago, then they never would have rolled on Suge and told police about what he did to Pac in Vegas.
Planet Ill:Do you ever think about what might have been?
Planet Ill:Why is that?
Because it don’t make a difference you know what I’m saying? Shit could’ve gone different. It could be him here instead of me, or both of us could be here. It could be both of us gone too, but it’s not, so I don’t really like to question it. I just wake up every day thankful to still be here.
Planet Ill:How did that whole Beef situation influence your music?
B.I.G.:It didn’t influence me. Because it wasn’t nothing that really played out on wax for the most part. But I would say that it did make me more careful outside of music just in terms of making sure security is on point and I’m not putting my family in any dangerous situations or whatever. But lyrically I’m still the same dude that will bring it to your neck if you need that. That ain’t ever gonna change you know?
Planet Ill:You’ve become kind of like an elder statesmen in the game. How have you responded during those times emcees you have relationships with battle on wax?
B.I.G.: I try to mind my own you know what I’m saying? But this rap shit is about being better. It’s about being better than you, you, and you. So if battles break out along those lines that’s Hip Hop. Anything else is bullshit. Ain’t no sense in beefing cause there’s too much money to be made in this rap shit. That’s why the LL vs. Canibus, Lox vs. Rocafella, and Mobb Deep vs. Jay battles never bothered me because it’s all competition.
Planet Ill:You’ve had your run ins as well. When you and Nas got into it…
B.I.G.:When me and Nas went at it we were competing for that title. Fighting for respect.
Planet Ill:But you talked about duct taping his daughter.
B.I.G.:That’s just rap man. He came at me pretty hard too but that was all about wanting to be the best. At the end of the day you have to respect duke.
Planet Ill:What’s your relationship like with Nas now?
B.I.G.:It’s cool, you know what I’m saying? He does what he does and I do what I do. But can’t nobody do what I can do. I’ll just leave it at that.