Damien Barling: June 16, 1971

Amazing to think Tupac Shakur would’ve turned 46 years old today.

Even more amazing to think he was only 25 when he died in 1996.

The math adds up and time goes by fast.

2pac was a brillant artist whose been romanticized in an extraordinary way since his passing. Its incredibly difficult to separate fact from fiction when talented artists die at such a young age. With Pac its a little more simple. The facts far out weight the fictions.

2pac had a work ethic that would rival Kobe Bean Bryant. He recorded hundreds of records before his passing, most of which where released in the decade following his passing.

He was a poet. No, not a talented rapper type poet. An actual poet whose poetry was released in books, again, following his death.

Pac was a legit two-way player. His big screen debut in Juice was a seminal moment in a career that very well could’ve been brighter then his hip hop career. Shakur could’ve been a leading man. Not a “black movie” leading man. A Denzel Washington leading man. A Matt Damon leading man. He was that good. That believable.

I can’t speak on John Lennon. I can’t speak on Elvis. I didn’t live through that. I didn’t, don’t, and can’t grasp their impact. I lived through 2Pac. I witnessed his brilliance. Hip hop lost a legend. Hollwood lost potential. The black community lost an activist. A voice.

More from Damien Barling
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