Southern rapper Waka Flocka Flame has revealed his favorite motivational song comes from the late Tupac Shakur.
According to Flocka, Pac’s 1993 record, “Keep Ya Head Up” was pure motivation for him during his childhood.
“Man, I heard this [Pac record] right here and on some real G sh*t though, on some real n*gga sh*t though, real talk, when this song came on, we ain’t have it all, we were struggling,” Flocka said about being a child motivated by the late rapper. “I would rock my cousin’s shoes, or the shoes he didn’t want. Wearing my uncle’s big a** shoes that were like three sizes bigger. Gotta go to church every Sunday. Going and getting three loafs of bread every Sunday or Saturday morning by the Chinese store — my grandma used to send like four grand kids to go do it. We all had Wonder Bread — real talk though, the number one song is Tupac, ‘Keep Ya Head Up.’ If you’re struggling and you feel down, depressed, your chin’s down. Lift it up man, throw on that ‘Keep Ya Head Up’ [and] I’ll bet you’ll have some sh*t to think about then.” (Hip Hop Nation)
Recently, Flocka’s mother talked about her son’s admiration for Pac and his decision to name his debut Flockaveli after the rapper’s moniker, Makaveli.
“People took [his album title] like he’s comparing hisself to Tupac. Never that. He know he’s not Tupac. You have people that want to be other people, like it’s not that. When people are so limited, they stay stuck. l just told him yesterday. “Why you staying stuck?” He did grow up around guns and drugs but he’s still a fun person. You have to learn how to channel all of that energy into having fun. It doesn’t have to be about shooting and killing. In the hood these are things that you do experience, but he wasn’t raised in the projects or some real hard places. He chose to hang out in stuff like that. Those are the places that he wanted to be at. That’s where he felt comfortable, where he belonged.” (VIBE)
Last month, Flocka discussed being influenced by Italian philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli and dumbing down his rap image.
“Tupac introduced me to the [writing] of Machiavelli,” Waka said in an interview. “That’s why I made that. I can’t just, ‘Oh, Tupac did that, so I’m gonna do that too.’ If people read, they would love that man. That man is a mind-game genius. I read the Machiavelli war-tactic books, his biography, everything. That man is just like sticks and stones, bad. You see Waka Flocka, what do you think? Negativity. You read Machiavelli? Negativity. My brain, I’m so sharp, I can play stupid on the camera and they think I’m dumb. So really. you just playing yourself. I’m so ahead of y’all. That’s for the bloggers.” (MTV)
Flocka recently spoke with SOHH about being inspired by Pac.
“I apologize to Tupac fans if they think I’m using Tupac to sellrecords,” Waka told SOHH. “I’m not. Tupac is the reason why I really made Flockaveli. It’s because of the story of . You know what I’m saying? And at the time right now, I’m gonna sum it all up, Makaveli had his back up against the wall, he felt like people were out to get him. You know what I’m saying? It’s how he felt. At the time I was making my album, that’s how I felt. And that’s what was going on. I was going through bad press, bad time, everything.” (SOHH)
Check out Waka Flocka Flame speaking on Tupac Shakur below: