The Not So Wonderful World of Cease-A-Leo
Here in the midwest, we don't have smelly Africans posted up on street corners selling mixtapes, bootleg DVDs, and remaindered copies of Al Sharpton's Al on America. In fact, I'm not even sure why that's allowed in New York. (Seriously, wtf?) Therefore, I'm not as up on my bootleg rap DVD game as I would be otherwise.
Fortunately, it was somehow arranged that Showtime would make the Chronicles of Junior Mafia DVD available as part of their On Demand service, which is where I caught it last night. Here are a few things I learned.
1. Biggie sold his publishing to Diddy in 1995 for $200,000. Last year, when the Lox were on Hot 97 begging for their own publishing back, Little Cease called up and mentioned that Diddy still owns Biggie's shit. Next thing you know, Biggie's moms was calling up talking about, Little Cease doesn't know what he's talking about. Hence we can presume she also received $200,000.
2. 2Pac was a lying bitch. Similarly, I wasn't fully up on this issue until I read about it in Ethan Brown's Queens Reigns Supreme. 2Pac didn't get shot five times when he was robbed in the Quad Studios lobby, as he would brag in subsequent interviews. In fact, he was only shot twice and one was a self-inflected gunshot wound in the groin. After he got shot, he jumped up and took the elevator up to Little Cease's floor to beg for a square. They wouldn't give him one, which is why he got all pissed.
3. Biggie wrote all of the Junior Mafia album. I suppose this might have been obvious all along, but it still seems like a waste. As adamant as Biggie was about seeing that his crew made money in the music biz, most of them never really received much. Junior Mafia's checks were cut 9 ways, even though there were never more than three or four people in the group who actually rapped. Diddy, on the other hand, received a check for $175,000 for his "work" on the album. Also, Diddy would do shit like insist that they go to the Bahamas to record, knowing good and well he was the only one who could afford a vacation.
4. This was all Diddy's fault. In the month before he was killed, Biggie was out in LA doing some promotional shit for the new album - shooting videos, giving interviews and what have you. He wanted to head back to New York, but Diddy made him stay out there to work on Diddy's own album. While he was there he recorded "Victory" and the "All About the Benjamins" remix. Biggie was going to catch a flight back to New York the day before he was killed, but Diddy insisted he stay out there so he could "show his face" at that Vibe magazine party.
5. In the end, Biggie peed his pants. There was a hospital about two blocks from where Biggie was shot, but the dudes Diddy had driving didn't know their way around LA. Instead, they took Biggie to Cedars-Sinai, which is a nice little hike. By the time they got there, Biggie had peed his pants, which is how Cease knew it was all over. He didn't bother to follow Biggie into the hospital. Within a matter of hours, Diddy had hopped a plane back to New York, leaving Cease and Junior Mafia to pick Biggie's mother up at the airport the next morning and help her make arrangements to bring Biggie back to New York.