It’s been twenty years since the release of The Notorious B.I.G.’s debut album Ready To Die. The album was met with terrific reviews and remains a staple album in the years since its release. Some call the album a classic and you couldn’t disagree with them. No matter how many new albums and artists step into the limelight, Juicy, Big Poppa, One More Chance, and Warning will still remain in many of the radio’s rotations. Once a snippet of Biggie’s songs comes on the radio you’re destined to continue rapping it out for the rest of the day. And who can’t, baby baby uh! Sadly, Biggie was slain a few years after Ready to Die but die hard fans still listen to this track in one shot from time to time. Think you’re a fan, here are ten must know facts about Biggie’s first album, Ready to Die.
•The original tracklist for the album consisted of 17 songs but in 2004, for it’s ten-year anniversary, two extra songs were released with it. Who Shot Ya? was included and it was rumored to be directed by Tupac Shakur after a shooting in Manhattan in 1994.
•Christopher Wallace, known as Biggie Smalls recorded the entire album in New York City between 1993 and 1994. He was 21-22 years old.
•The first tracks to be recorded on Ready to Die were Ready to Die, Gimmie the Loot, and Things Done Changed.
•When Sean Combs was fired from Uptown Records, Ready to Die was hung in the balance as the project was half done. Biggie began to fend for himself in North Carolina selling drugs before moving back to New York to finish the album under Combs’ new label Bad Boy
•In 2006, twelve years after the release of the album, a jury awarded Bridgeport Music and Westbound Records $4.2 million in punitive damages after three songs on illegally sampled songs.
•Producer Pete Rock alleged Combs of stealing the beat for Juicy after Combs heard it after visiting him. He said that now he has no hard feelings.
•Big Poppa was Biggie’s first top ten pop hit. It also peaked at number on the Billboard Rap list.
•Big Poppa was nominated for a Grammy, Best Solo Rap Performance. However, it lost to Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise
•Ready to Die was re-reviewed by The Source in 2002 and was given a ‘five mics’ rating
•Ready to Die also placed 133 on the 500 greatest albums of all time list.