10 Great Songs by 2Pac (TuPac Shakur)

First lets take a look at some background information about 2Pac. TuPac Amaru Shakur born June 16, 1971 in New York and died September 13, 1996 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Known by stage names 2Pac, Pac, and Makaveli. 2Pac has sold 75+ million albums worldwide and is by far one of the best selling music artists off all time. Pac was also just beginning his acting career just before his death. 2Pac is considered by many to be one of Hip-Hop’s most influential of time. If you ask almost any emcee within Hip-Hop they will say that 2Pac was a large influence.

Now lets go on to the list of 10 great songs by 2Pac aka Makaveli Tha Don. I have heard just about every song released by 2Pac and his group Tha Outlawz, so it is hard to narrow down to only 10 songs. This is not a best list or anything like that, I’m not picking favorites. This is just a list of some of my favorite songs by 2Pac which every Hip-Hop/Rap fan should hear at least once.

1. Until The End Of Time – from the posthumous album of the same name (Until The End Of Time – 2001) The song features R.L. from the R&B; group Next singing the chorus. The song samples Mr. Mister’s 1985 #1 song “Broken Wings.” There is a music video for this song that contains a compilation of unreleased footage of 2Pac. You can view the music video right here. This song means a lot to me because of the meaning behind the lyrics, just like almost every other 2Pac song ever recorded. Plus this song has an amazing chorus sung by R.L.

2. Letter To My Unborn – Child (Letter 2 My Unborn) also from the same posthumous album above titled Until The End Of Time – 2001. This song samples Michael Jackson’s 1989 song “Liberian Girl.” On this song TuPac explains to his unborn children his life and what he lived through and what to do if he passes on before being able to raise them. This song means a lot to me because of the message it sends and why TuPac wrote and recorded it. I love this entire song, especially the entire second verse. One of my favorite quotes by any Hip-Hop artist: “I got shot 5 times but I’m still breathin’ / Living proof there’s a God if you need a reason.”

3. Made Niggaz – from the Gang Related soundtrack and featuring Tha Outlawz. Produced by 2Pac and Johnny J. There are 3 versions of a music video to this song, to view the full video (7:54) follow this link here. The full version at that link begins mocking P Diddy (Puffy) and Notorious Big (Biggie). The camera is controlled by Pac and Tha Outlawz during the filming. This is one of my favorite songs of all time. The content behind the song may not be the best influence or best image, but this is one of Hip-Hop’s better songs. 2Pac does aim some lines towards Biggie and Bad Boy Records. 2Pac has 2 verses in this song along with 5 of Tha Outlawz. The order goes: 2Pac, Napoleon, Hussein Fatal, EDI, Kastro, Kadafi, and 2Pac. 2Pac’s 3nd verse is amazing. There is no chorus, which makes this song even better in my opinion. Great song.

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4. Troublesome ’96 – from the album released after death by Death Row Records titled Greatest Hits in 1998. This song was on disc 2, track number 1, and was previously unreleased. I love the sound and flow of this song and the lyrics are great. And yes like the song above the message behind this song may not be the best, but there is deeper meaning behind this song. Especially in the 3rd verse with lines such as: “..The crime rate ain’t decline / Niggas bustin’ shots like they lost their mind / Like twenty-five to life never crossed their mind..” And one of the better parts of the song comes just after those lines: “..Tell me young nigga never learned a thang / Dead at thirteen cause he yearned to bang / Sniffed a lot of flowers, but how can I cry / Try to warn the little nigga either stop or die..” That part explains how there are so many young people trying to live the life of a thug and gangsta and don’t realize the risk, which is prison or death. Pac tells right there now a 13 year old yearned to bang and eventually got killed. Then goes on to say how ‘can I cry, I tried to warn him stop or die.’

5. Starin’ At The World Thru My Rearview – from TuPac: Resurrection (Original Soundtrack) released by Amaru Entertainment for the soundtrack of the documentary TuPac: Resurrection (2003). I have heard more than one version of this song, but the version I prefer has 2Pac with 2 verses, EDI with 1, Kadafi with 1, and 2Pac on the chorus. I love the message behind this song, startin’ at the world thru my rearview. Once you reach a certain point of knowledge and understanding its like your just looking back at everything and everyone. Also EDI proves his talent on this verse and Kadafi comes hard like always. 2Pac has two great verses and this beat is nice. One of my favorite Hip-Hop songs of all time.

6. Fuck Em All – from the album released after his death titled Better Dayz in November 2002. Track #5 on disc one featuring Tha Outlawz and Produced by Johnny J. I love the flow and sound of this entire song. Not a great message, but not every song is supposed to have a good message. There are shots aimed at Diddy, Biggie, and Bad Boy in this song. I love chorus on this track. It features 2Pac, Kadafi, EDI, Young Noble, Napoleon, and Kastro. Also like many of their songs 2Pac has 2 verses. I loved Young Noble’s verse on this song although it is short. One of the iller parts of this song comes when 2Pac spits: “I got glad bags with enemies / Cut up so they remember me / Soaked up in Hennessey / So they relatives know it’s me”

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7. Ghetto Gospel – was originally released as the 2nd single on his posthumous album Loyal to the Game in 2004. It samples Elton John “Indian Sunset” from his Madman Across The Water album. This song was produced by Eminem. This was the only song from this 2004 album that comes with a music video which can viewed right here. The end of the video features a message from TuPac’s mother Afeni Shakur saying “Remember to keep yourself alive, there is nothing more important than that.

8. Breathin’ – from 2Pac’s second posthumous album released in 2001 titled Until The End Of Time. Breathin’ is track number 7 and features Tha Outlawz and was produced by Johnny J. This is one of my favorite beats and songs by 2Pac and Tha Outlawz. Young Noble, Napoleon, Kastro, and EDI all have verses following 2Pac. There is a great freestyle by an underground emcee named Dynamite, which can be heard and downloaded right here. This is just a great Hip-Hop song.

9. They Don’t Give A Fuck About Us – from the third posthumous album titled Better Dayz. This song features Tha Outlawz and once again is produced by Johnny J. This song has a catchy beat, great chorus, and great lyrics. There is deeper meaning behind what 2Pac is saying and what message he is sending out in this song. 2Pac speaks of the Illuminati and the plans to micro-chip humans. 2Pac says: “Some say they expect Illuminati take my body to sleep.” In the same verse he also says: “Before I flee computer chips.” The chorus tells how nobody cares and takes time to notice you until you begin to rise. If you decide to follow a life of thuggin and gangs you are overlooked and ignored, but once you begin to rise and be seen as a hero you become a problem to them. Many fans say he is directly referring to the Illuminati when he says ‘they’ throughout this song. No matter this is a great song overall.

10. Blasphemy – from 2Pac’s final album released while alive in 1996 titled The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory. This song features Prince Ital Joe and Jamala Lesane. This is one of 2Pac’s songs with great meaning behind it. This entire album causes controversy and brings up many questions, I mean just read the title. The word Killuminati means Kill Illuminati. There is so much behind the idea that 2Pac was either fighting the Illuminati or fighting to escape the Illuminati. He said himself he was trying to Kill the idea and presence of Illuminati, whether he believe or not is unknown. Then it says The 7 Day Theory, which if you know nothing about is very interesting to research. The number 7 comes up over and over again within 2Pac’s music and life. Some believe Pac is still alive on this planet and is just hidden away and the number 7 has something to do with it. Then this song Blasphemy begins with distorted and deepened voices talking about Jesus returning to earth. 2Pac says many controversal lines within this song such as: “We probably in Hell already, our dumb asses not knowin / Everybody kissin ass to go to heaven ain’t goin / Put my soul on it, I’m fightin devil niggaz daily / Plus the media be crucifying brothers severly / Tell me I ain’t God’s son, nigga mom a virgin.” And in the same verse: “Criminal mind all the time, wait for Judgment Day / They say Moses split the Red Sea / I split the blunt and rolled the fat one, I’m deadly — Babylon beware / Comin from the Pharoahe’s kids, retaliation.” Many believe that Babylon Beware is a reference to the Mason’s and Illuminati. One of the best parts of the song comes in verse 3 when he says: “The preacher want me buried why? Cause I know he a liar / Have you ever seen a crackhead, that’s eternal fire / Why you got these kids minds, thinkin that they evil / while the preacher bein freaky you say honor God’s people / Should we cry, when the Pope die, my request / We should cry if they cried when we buried Malcolm X.” One part where he causes controversy is when he calls God ‘her’ which goes against those that have the ignorant idea that God could only be man. “Niggaz in Jerusalem, waitin for signs / God promised, she’s just takin her time, haha / Living by the Nile while the water flows” Oh and I just want to point out some things most people do wrong on the song lyrics sites for Blasphemy by 2Pac. It is ‘while the Preacher being FREAKY, not richer as in raping young children.’ And it is ‘In my brain how can you explain, time in B.C.’ (Before Crack, something Pac said many times) NOT D.C. Some of the realest words 2Pac ever spoke are in this song. Sorry that this description is so long, there is just so much to discuss about this song alone.

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Other great songs that could easily be on this list: Against All Odds, All Eyez On Me, Ambitionz As A Ridah, Bomb First, Changes, Dumpin, Everything They Owe, Ghost, Hail Mary, Hell Razor, Hit Em Up, Holla At Me, Last Ones Left, Life Goes On, Lil Homies, Lost Souls, Me Against The World, Scared Straight, Shorty Wanna Be A Thug, Street Fame, The Uppercut, Thugz Mansion, To Live And Die In LA, Tradin’ War Stories, When I Get Free, along with many more.