Kendrick Lamar

Source: Tim Mosenfelder / Getty

Today is another one of hip-hop’s depressing anniversaries: It’s been 19 years since Tupac Shakur passed away at the young age of 25.

Like every year, the date inspired a steady stream of tributes. The most noteworthy one this year comes from Kendrick Lamar.

The Compton emcee has kept Shakur’s memory alive by releasing To Pimp A Butterfly near the 20th anniversary of Me Against The World, nearly naming the album Tu Pimp a Caterpillar, and ending it with a conversation with the legend. Lamar penned a letter that was published on Shakur’s website.

I was 8 yrs old when I first saw you. I couldn’t describe how I felt at that moment. So many emotions. Full of excitement. Full of joy and eagerness. 20 yrs later I understand exactly what that feeling was.


The people that you touched on that small intersection changed lives forever. I told myself I wanted to be a voice for man one day. Whoever knew I was speaking out loud for u to listen.

Thank you.



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