In honor of the upcoming 15th anniversary of the death of Tupac Shakur, XXL Magazine has featured the iconic mogul on their September issue.
Along with the cover shot, Pac’s biological father, Bill Garland, reflects on his son’s legacy and frustrations as a misunderstood artist in the 90’s.
“[Tupac] cared for people,” he said. “That was his main thing. He really cared for people. I think that’s why he would get so upset when people tried to question his commitment, his love for Black women or Black men. The East Coast/West Coast, you know, that’s a fabrication. I don’t have to begin to tell you that. So when that was questioned, it bothered him. Because he would give his heart or soul. He was a giving person. He would give anything to people. He would go in a store. [If there was a] Black man who couldn’t afford a $1,500 pair of boots, he would buy ‘em for him. Think that Black man would ever forget Tupac? That’s just the way he is. But I don’t think that he did it for that. He did it because he had it, and he didn’t. That’s the way he is.” (XXL Magazine)
Southern rapper Rick Ross and Meek Mill have breathed new life into the rapper’s legacy this summer via his “Tupac Back” anthem.
On Tupac Shakur’s 40th birthday, Meek Mill keeps his memory alive by dedicating the Mr. Boomtown-directed video for “Tupac Back” to the late legend. Filmed in Los Angeles, the Maybach Music Group rappers stay posted up on the block, while Meek spits some of his bars behind bars in an orange jumpsuit. And Ricky “I’m a Photographer’s Dream” Rozay continues to go shirtless. Would Pac be proud? (Rap-Up)
In December 2009, former G-Unit member Game spoke on the impact Pac would have if he never died.
“#if2PACwasALIVE I probably wouldn’t be who I am today. his un-timely death is what motivated me to wanna put this sh*t on my back !!!,” he wrote. “& #ifBIGwasALIVE nobody would be runnin round talkin bout they the KING OF NEW YORK !!! he was hands down that n*gga !!! #ifBIGwasALIVE Tianna & lil CJ would have a father this X-mas ! #if2PACwasALIVE Will Smith wouldn’t have awife, cuz Jada was Pac’s gyrl….. #realtalk #if2PACwasALIVE he would be 37 years old. #if2PACwasALIVE him & Denzel would be fightin for movie roles…. cuz he was on his way to a OSCAR !!! #if2PACwasALIVE you could hit him @2PAC & he would hit you back just like I do ………. #realtalk #if2PACwasALIVE B.I.G. would still be alive !!! #nuffsaid.” (Game’s Twitter)
Southern rapper David Banner previously talked to SOHH about imagining Tupac alive.
“I think if Pac was here, hip-hop would have more of a voice in what’s going on in this election,” said Mississippi rapper, David Banner. “I think Tupac would be one of the people that could rally young people together. He’s one of the few artists that would’ve been able to take his fame and actually be able to focus that to somewhere positive.” (SOHH)
The new XXL Magazine 2Pac issue drops Tuesday, August 16th.
Check out past footage of 2Pac below: