The Rivals

LL Cool J
LL Cool J picture
Background: I want to address this rivalry first because it has gotten a lot of attention recently on the message board. Tupac always showed LL Cool J nothing but respect. He even praised LL in the song "Old School" on Me Against the World. There really isn't that much background on this rivalry but LL released a B-side song as kind of a sequel to Biggie's B-side "Who Shot Ya?" called "I Shot Ya" directed at Tupac where he praises Mobb Deep for dissing Tupac. Tupac has an unreleased song called "Little Homies" where he takes shots at LL but the actual cause of this beef still remains a mystery.
Dr. Dre
Dr. Dre picture
Background: This was kind of a strange rivalry because Tupac and Dre were thought to be close especially after California Love. I have heard three points of view on this though. Tupac says it was because Dre wasn't doing anything at Death Row and was taking credit for other people's work. Tupac didn't like him for this and also for the fact that Dre never appeared at Snoop's trial to support him although it seems that Tupac was more upset over this than Snoop. Dre never really commented on it except he said that Tupac and him never hung out and Tupac didn't know him so he shouldn't be dissing him. The final story on this was really shocking and came from Suge Knight in an interview which can be seen on the Thug Immortal video. Suge Knight doesn't name names but he basically says that Dre is gay and that Tupac didn't want him to be a part of Death Row because Dre had a lover working for him while he was married with children. I suggest watching this interview for the full story but this is consistent with Tupac calling him gay on several songs. Specific quotes included "that nigga sittin' up in his mansion suckin' dick, eatin' pussy" plus in a number of his songs he says stuff like "we shook Dre punk ass, now we out of the closet" and "check your sexuality it's fruity as this alize" along with "California Love Part II without gay ass Dre."
Chino XL
Chino XL picture
Background: There really isn't that much background needed on this rivalry. Basically Chino XL likes to put metaphors in his songs and if you don't recognize the name, he had a extremely brief hit last year with the song "Kreep." Anyway, in one of Chino XL's songs, he says "...or you will get fucked like Tupac did in jail." For the record, it was Wendy Williams of Hot 97 in NYC who started that rumor.


Nas picture
Background: It is kind of tough to get a good explanation on this rivalry but I originally heard that it started when Nas was talking bad about Tupac in an interview. Then I later heard that they originally met at Club 662 in Las Vegas but it seems by Tupac's lyrics that it was based on Nas stealing Tupac's style, beats, and Nas trying to act like Tupac. I think Nas's affiliation with Bad Boy may have also played a factor along with him working with Dre.

Bad Boy

Bad Boy Logo
Background: I have basically just thrown all of the Bad Boy artists into one section because it is basically about the same thing. It all stems from the 1994 shooting of Tupac in New York City. I would recommend reading up on this in the article I wrote about it featured on my main page. Tupac basically felt that Biggie didn't warn him about the shooting. He didn't think Puffy and Biggie set him up, he just felt that they didn't warn him. Then he went to jail and Bad Boy got bigger as Tupac had to hear about the circumstances of his shooting from jail. The Junior Mafia beef was the same too except Tupac knew them well. He said in an interview that he used to support them and Biggie and give the members of Junior Mafia money to get home on the train. Again, for a better look at the rivalry with Bad Boy, check out the NY Shooting article that I wrote.
Mobb Deep
Background: This beef started when Tha Dogg Pound released New York, New York. Mobb Deep took offense to that and with Tragedy and Capone N Noreaga (two other NYC artists) they released LA, LA. There were 2 versions and one version used that same beat and in both versions the chorus was the same as from NY, NY except for a little change at the end. Now Tupac took offense to that and that's why he dissed Mobb Deep. The only thing I know Mobb Deep to have said before Tupac released Hit 'Em Up was in an article from RapSheet when they were discussing the East/West Coast beef with artists from both sides Mobb Deep said the way Tupac turned on NY was wrong and said they would buy a Snoop album but they would never buy another Tupac album. I think Havoc might have said this. Also, in the "Thug Immortal" interview, Tupac described why he didn't like Mobb Deep. He said that before he went to prison, he was cool with them. Then when his West Coast crew came to NY to Mobb Deep's concert, Mobb Deep ignored them. He said his crew tried to meet up with them after the show yelling "Thug Life", but they dissed them. What made Tupac even madder was that one of the guards he knew in prison also knew Mobb Deep, so after Tupac told the guy to tell Mobb Deep that his boys were coming, he took it as an insult when they dissed them. Then Tupac came out with Hit 'Em Up...called Prodigy out about his sickle cell anemia and that's when Mobb Deep responded with Drop A Gem On 'Em which appeared on their new album. Since Tupac's death, Mobb Deep has shown a lot of respect for him though.
Background: Jay Z is probably the only person to go out and publically diss Tupac. I mean Biggie never really did, nor did Mobb Deep. But Jay Z did. Jay Z is, well he isnt exactly a bad boy MC, but he does have his connections to Bad Boy. He and Biggie were good friends before Biggie's death, and Jay Z appeared on Biggie's, Lil Kim's, and Puffy's albums. Now how the beef with Jay Z started, I guess, is that, the only time Biggie actually dissed Pac on record was on his guest appearence on Jay Z's album REASONABLE DOUBT, the song was called "Brooklyn's Finest." Then Tupac dissed Jay Z back on "Bomb First." This song pointed at the beef with Jay-Z coming from him sticking up for Mobb Deep.
Other Rivals
Background: Tavis Smiley: On his debut show Tavis held a forum on the life and death of Tupac and from the very beginning of the show he tried to defame and portray Tupac as a thug out of control. All he talked about was how Tupac stayed in the spotlight as a advocate for violence and disrespect for women. He had as guests Russell Simmons from Def Jam Comedy and Kevin Powell, a writer for Vibe magazine. Throughout the show, Tavis continued to refute every compliment that Mr. Simmons mentioned about Tupac bringing up all the negative aspects of his life and music. Eventually Mr. Simmons got fed up and with one last comment he blasted Tavis for his berating of Tupac and hung up the phone in the middle of the show saying that he would not continue to be apart of a show that showed such disrespect and called Tavis "America's Favorite House Nigger." Tom Joyner: He has a nationally syndicated radio morning show that airs in many large cities around the world. He brings a lot of well known and popular black people on his show. The monday following Tupac's death he and his co-host (Jay Anthony Brown) were really hard on Tupac saying things like he was a bad influence on the younger generation and that his fascination with death was misleading his fans. They would go on to say that it was scary that so many people held Tupac in such high regards and loved him so much. As their listeners phoned in their opinions about how much they would miss Tupac and how much of an influence Tupac had on their life, Tom and Jay would belittle them and say that it wasn't healthty for us to believe in a man that only advocated death and violence. The only objective person and somewhat of a comforter for Tupac's fan was his other co-host Syber Wilkes. Jacques Agnant: In the song released after his death called "Against All Odds", Tupac tells the story of "a snitch named Haitian Jack". The song says Jack is stocky, light skinned and has a Haitian accent, all of which describes Agnant. Agnant is on probabtion after pleading guilty to sexual misconduct in a 1994 incident in which Shakur was convicted of sexual abuse of a woman who came to his hotel room. Tupac believed Agnant made a deal with prosecutors at the rapper's expense. Blackstreet: This isn't really much of a rivalry. People have just wondered why "Toss It Up" and "No Diggity" sound alike as well as "I Ain't Mad At Cha" and "Don't Leave Me." Blackstreet just said that it was a coincedence but it could be because Teddy Riley and Aaron Hall were partners and worked on the same beats. Teddy Riley then incorporated those beats in with Blackstreet and Aaron Hall with Tupac. I have heard that the original "Toss It Up" was identical to "No Diggity" and had to be completely changed though. There is also speculation that Dre stole some of Tupac's beats and used them when he worked with Blackstreet and also when he worked with Nas which could explain the similar, if not identical, beats between some of Tupac's and Nas's work. C. Delores Tucker: Enough said.

Back to theMain Page.

Thanks to The Unofficial Tupac Homepage for letting me use their work.