Got a Tip? Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here
READ NOW

TMZ SPORTS

  • FS1
    M-T-Th-F:
    9:00 PM PST

    W:
    9:30 PM PST
clock-iconREMIND ME TO WATCH

Notorious B.I.G.

Powered by imdb

Christopher Wallace, a.k.a. Biggie Smalls, was born in Brooklyn, New York, May 21, 1972. He was the son of Jamaican parents, Voletta Wallace, a pre-school teacher, and George Latore, a welder and small-time politician. He was raised in the poor Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant as the son of a preschool teacher. Dropping out of high school at the age of seventeen, Biggie became a crack dealer, which he proclaimed was his only source of income. Hustlin' one's way was a common life for a young Black man trying to make a living in the ghetto. His career choices involved certain risks. However, a trip to North Carolina for a routine drug exchange ended being the soon-to-be MC a nine-month stay behind bars. Once released, Biggie borrowed a friend's four-track tape recorder and laid down some hip-hop tracks in a basement. The tapes were then passed around and played at local radio station in New York.Not extremely attractive, Wallace named himself Biggie, for his weight. Biggie was a Black man who was overweight, extremely dark skinned, and had a crook in his eye, yet he was a charmer. A young impresario and sometime producer by the name of Sean Combs heard Biggie's early tapes. Impressed, Puffy went to sign Biggie to his new label, Bad Boy Records.Puffy and Biggie worked on the artist's first album, and the Notorious B.I.G. was born. Biggie was first heard on a remix of a Mary J. Blige song and a track on the Who's the Man? (1991) soundtrack. After these successes, the album worked on earlier went through its final touches and was released in 1994, titled "Ready to Die." The record was certified platinum quickly, and the Notorious B.I.G. was named MC of the Year at the 1995 Billboard Music Awards. After the quick success of the album, Biggie went back to get his friends, some who didn't even rhyme. He had several run-ins with the law, on charges that ranged from beatings, to drugs and to weapons, while all claimed that Biggie was a gentle person. He soon met a rapper from the west coast named Tupac Shakur, and the two became friends. Tupac supported Biggie and was often giving him advice. However, their friendship turned into the most violent era of hip-hop music on November 30, 1994. While Biggie and Puffy were at a recording session at Quad Recording Studios in Manhattan, Tupac went there to record with another rapper for his third studio album, "Me Against The World" at the same time, but in the lobby, Tupac was held at gunpoint and robbed of $40,000 worth of jewelry. Tupac was shot five times. Biggie rushed down just in time to see Tupac being loaded into an ambulance. Extending a middle finger, Pac blamed Biggie for the shooting and said that Biggie knew about it and failed to warn him. This sparked the East Coast, West Coast rivalry. Tupac later recovered from his injuries. During this encounter, Biggie admitted that he was scared for his life. Biggie never responded to any of Tupac's disses. Tupac attacked Biggie in every way he could, even starting strong rumors that there was a love affair between Tupac and Biggie's wife, Faith Evans.Later, The entire country became divided into two groups, the west side and the east side, which became Death Row Records versus Bad Boy Records, Marion 'Suge' Knight versus Puff Daddy, and Tupac versus Biggie. The two of them finally met again late in 1995, and Tupac secretly said to Biggie, "I'm just tryin' to sell some records." Unfortunately, it became very real when on September 7, 1996, Tupac was shot multiple times in a drive-by shooting off the Las Vegas strip after he left a fight he was involved in inside of the MGM Grand Hotel after a Mike Tyson boxing match. He died six days later on September 13, 1996 as a result of those gun shot wounds at the age of 25. The case is still unsolved. Biggie was scared for his life, but he wanted to put an end to the rivalry between the two coasts. Biggie went to the west coast for several events, to support for his next release album, "Life After Death," but also to make a statement that the rivalry was over. On March 7, 1997, he attended the Soul Train Music Awards and went to the after party hosted by Vibe magazine and Qwest Records on March 8. On March 9, Biggie was sitting in an SUV on the street when he was shot multiple times by an unknown assailant. He died almost instantly. Hip-Hop faced its greatest tragedy when both Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G. were killed. Biggie was only 24 years old.  See full bio on IMDb »

LATEST STORIES
  
Notorious B.I.G. vs Tupac -- East Coast/West Coast War ... Sex Tape Edition

Notorious B.I.G. vs Tupac
(Hypothetical) Sex Tape War!

Singer Faith Evans is in the middle of Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac again ... tackling a not-so-far-fetched hypothetical question -- which rap legend would make the best sex tape? Choose wisely,… READ MORE >

B.I.G.'s Family -- 'Pleased' with Investigation Progress

B.I.G.'s Family
'Pleased' with Investigation Progress

The estate of rapper Notorious B.I.G. is "pleased" that law enforcement agencies have reinvigorated their investigation into his mysterious shooting death ... TMZ has learned. According to… READ MORE >

- 2092 days ago
Notorious B.I.G. Murder Investigation 'Reinvigorated'

Notorious B.I.G.
Murder Investigation 'Reinvigorated'

The investigation into the slaying of Notorious B.I.G. was "reinvigorated" just a few months ago as a result of new information ... 13 years after he was killed in Los Angeles ... this according… READ MORE >

- 2092 days ago
Michael Clarke Duncan Could Have Saved Biggie

Michael Clarke Duncan
Could Have Saved Biggie

Notorious B.I.G. could still be alive today ... if only Michael Clarke Duncan hadn't switched shifts the night he was killed."The Green Mile" star who once did security for rappers, told us he was… READ MORE >

- 2366 days ago
Notorious B.I.G. in Another West Coast Feud

Notorious B.I.G. in
Another West Coast Feud

Biggie Smalls is smack in the middle of another heated battle in California -- but this time, the deceased rapper's wife, Faith Evans, is the one in the hot seat. It's all over private home videos… READ MORE >

- 2408 days ago
Biggie Actor Faces Notorious Assault Rap

Biggie Actor Faces
Notorious Assault Rap

The guy who's playing the Notorious B.I.G. in that hip-hop biopic is facing a rap of his own -- for allegedly assaulting his wife.Court records show Jamal Woolard was arrested and charged back on… READ MORE >

- 2808 days ago
Mo' Biggie, Mo' Shootings

Mo' Biggie,
Mo' Shootings

The new Notorious B.I.G. flick has at least one critic -- a freshly shot movie-goer.A man took at least one bullet to the abdomen during the screening. Jamal Woolard, who plays Biggie in the film,… READ MORE >

- 2812 days ago
Lil' Kim -- B.I.G. Full of B.S.

Lil' Kim
B.I.G. Full of B.S.

That well-hyped Notorious B.I.G. biopic is getting good buzz -– but at least one person has some big issues with it.Namely, rapperista Lil' Kim, who says the flick is studded with "many… READ MORE >

- 2815 days ago
Life After Death: Artists Top Charts From the Grave

Life After Death:
Artists Top Charts From the Grave

After being dead for three years, Johnny Cash has again topped the Billboard music charts -- for the first time in 37 years. Interestingly, TMZ did some digging and found out that The Man in… READ MORE >

- 3731 days ago

Around The Web