Today in Hip-Hop: The 20th Anniversary of Tupac’s ‘Me Against the World’
Though he was only 25 years old at the time of his death, Tupac Shakur's contribution to the world of hip-hop has far surpassed his mortality. Twenty years ago today on March 14, 1995, 'Pac released his third studio album, Me Against The World, and changed rap forever.
Me Against The World made history in more ways than one. With emotional and socially conscious musings on songs like "Dear Mama" and "So Many Tears," Me Against The World marked 'Pac's ascension from the traditional gangsta rap he was famous for producing. 'Pac made this album his most personal work to date with very few features to show off his introspective rap prowess.
One of the most obvious and eerie themes of Me Against The World was 'Pac spitting so prolifically about his own death. 'Pac and his Outlawz had been involved in shootings before, but as if predicting the future, songs like "If I Die 2Nite," "Lord Knows" and "Outlaw" directly reference Tupac going through a shooting which would result in his death, which happened in 1996.
The album marked the first time an artist had a No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 while in jail as 'Pac was serving time for a sexual abuse charge in March 1995. The lead single, "Dear Mama" peaked at No. 9 on the Hot 100. Me Against The World remained at the top spot for four weeks in 1995, receiving double platinum certification by the end of 1995.
Salute to this moment in hip-hop history.