Kendrick Lamar Pens Tribute to Tupac Shakur on Anniversary of His Death
"I was 8 yrs old when I first saw you. I couldn't describe how I felt at that moment," the rapper writes in a moving letter.
Sept. 13 marks the 19th anniversary of Tupac Shakur’s death. In his memory, Kendrick Lamar has penned a poignant letter that’s being featured on 2pac.com.
The official 2Pac Facebook page confirmed that the tribute, which is signed "K.L.," comes from Lamar.
"I was 8 So many different emotions. Full of excitement. Full of joy and eagerness," Lamar writes. "20 yrs later I understand exactly what that feeling was. INSPIRED. The people that you touched on that small intersection changed lives forever. I told myself I wanted to be a voice for man one day. Whoever knew I was speaking out loud for u to listen. Thank you."
"Mortal Man" — the closing track on Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly, the album that topped the Billboard 200 upon its release in March 2015 — features a fictional posthumous conversation between the two rappers. On the track, Lamar "discusses" legacy, success and the current hip-hop generation with Shakur, using pieces from a 1994 interview with the late rapper.
In an interview with MTV around the time of the album’s release, Lamar said that the album’s original title was actually Tu Pimp a Caterpillar — which had a Tupac Shakur connection. He explained that "the abbreviation was Tupac, Tu.P.A.C."
This story originally appeared on Billboard.com.