It’s crazy seeing how time flies by extremely fast. 2Pac released Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z 25 years ago today and man it had its share of controversy. Holler If Ya Hear Me was his first single and it was released almost three weeks before the album dropped. The video depicted a cop getting killed at the end and several politicians wanted his album banned. All they did was give Pac some free promotion as he was mentioned on the TV all the time and by numerous Senators. The reason why he targeted cops was he was beaten by Oakland policemen and afterwards, he shot two off-duty Atlanta cops. Holler If Ya Hear Me was a continuation of 2Pac expressing his political ad social views like he did on 2Pacalypse Now. The album featured Ice Cube, Ice-T, Treach, Digital Underground and many more.
After 2Pac dropped the controversial Holler If Ya Hear Me, he went into straight party mode. I Get Around was released in June and it was one of the party anthems for the summer. I Get Around featured the crew that put him on and that’s Digital Underground. Throughout the summer, you couldn’t turn on the radio or any video station without hearing this track. The track spent 25 weeks on the charts and is considered an all-time classic hip hop record. The video for I Get Around can be viewed below!
I Get Around was still doing well on the charts, but he decided to drop another single from the album. Keep Ya Head Up was released at the end of October and let’s say this showed another side of 2Pac. While I Get Around was well-received, Keep Ya Head Up was his breakout track. As we all know, this is the track that Pac dedicated to all the ladies and it featured Dave Hollister. This track is also viewed, not only as the one of the best hip hop tracks, but cuts, period. The video features Jada Pinkett and the lady that the guys were trying to holler at. This is one of my all-time favorite tracks and you can view the video below.
About a month before the one-year anniversary of the album, 2Pac released another single. Papa’z Song was released in the middle of January of 1994 and he talked about dads not being in their child’s life. This track hits pretty hard because there are so many fathers are absent in their kids’ life. The video features his brother, Mopreme and Vivica A. Fox. Check out Papa’z Song below!
Overall, this is a dope album from Pac and this made me a bigger fan of his. Besides the singles, Last Wordz, Souljah’s Revenge, Guess Who’s Back, Representin ’93, 5 Deadly Venomz, The Streetz R Death Row and the title track are my favorite joints. If you’re a Pac head or someone who loves hip hop, this album should be in your collection. Check out the stream for the Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z album below.
Where are my hip hop fans? Where are all my 2Pac fans? Did you know that Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z was released 25 years ago today? What’s your favorite track off the album? Leave a comment below.