As planned, Snoop Dogg inducted his late friend and collaborator Tupac Shakur into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. His speech didn't shy away from weighty emotions, nor did it deny Snoop Dogg's natural sense of humor.
"While many remember him now as some kind of thugged out superhero," Snoop said, "Tupac really was only good and he represented through his music like no one before. It's the fact that he never shied away from it. He wore it like a badge of honor. With an unapologetic voice, Pac embraced those contradictions that proved we ain't just a character out of someone else's story book. To be human is to be many things at once. Strong and bold. Hard headed and intellectual. Courageous and afraid. Loving and vengeful. Revolutionary and oh, yeah I'm getting fucked up."
It's an important sentiment when inducting someone into an institution—however flawed—that's goal is to beatify its members. And it's all the more meaningful coming from Snoop, a friend, who understands these human contradictions better than most. "Pac's a part of history for a reason," he said towards the end of his speech." Because he made history. He's hip-hop history. He's American history and just like in school the more research you do on history the more information that you have. So do your research. I'm not talking about Pac the rapper, I'm not talking about Tupac the actor, I'm talking about Tupac the human being.
Snoop's anecdotes about the late rapper were brilliant, too. He said that they met for the first time in 1993, "at a wrap party in L.A, and on that night, Pac passed me my first blunt. That's right, Tupac is the one that got Snoop Dogg smoking weed. I was a Zig-Zag man before that shit. We became very good friends quickly thereafter."
His story about parasailing with Tupac is slightly more confusing, but no less entertaining.
I never shared this story before but it really speaks to our journey. I had just beat my case and Suge had taken us to South America to get away from all the drama and me and Pac was parasailing. You heard right. Snoop Dogg and Tupac parasailing together. You got to remember I had just beat my case and Pac had just got out of prison. Does anybody know what parasailing is? Because we damn sure didn't. Me and Pac were sitting on the edge of the boat with all this gear and shit on and all of sudden the boat pulls away and we start floating and slammed up into the water like boom. I don't know what was in there. Sharks, or octopus or whatever, I'm like, man.
It was crazy because not only did we think we're on top of the world at that time we actually were on top of the world. Floating around in style then all of sudden Pac started telling me about some movie idea he had about me being the main star. He was saying some shit. I wasn't paying attention because I was like, 'we're too high.' I mean the shit he was saying to me at that moment was different, though. He saw me as an actor. He saw more potential in me than I saw in myself and it's funny because after he passed away I started getting a lot of movie roles and all this stuff. Pac was looking out for us even after he was gone.
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