It immediately evolved into my generation’s “JFK”. I could spend the better part of decade researching, analyzing, compiling, investigating, propagating, spinning, spamming and dissecting facts, fiction and credibility of dozens of so-called experts, amateur sleuths, investigators and conspiracy theorists of the last twenty years- it would do no good.
My generation just like the one before can’t quite digest something simple. A great man cannot be brought down by a nobody for something so stupid, at least not without the backing of a shadow government, shape shifting reptiles from another world and of course, the Illuminati.
All bullshit aside, 2Pac’s legacy is tainted with fiction and fantasy. It’s quite simple. Shortly before he was mowed down in a hail of bullets, some Crips jumped a low level Death Row employee at a mall and snatched his Death Row pendant and chain. In the 90s, if you were part of the street world- anywhere from an associate of wannabes to Kingpins, snatching someone’s chain that represented their affiliation was the ultimate form of disrespect.
The night of the Tyson-Sheldon fight attended by Pac, Suge and the Death Row crew, notorious Compton Crip named Orlando “Baby Lane” Anderson was spotted in the MGM casino and they jumped him. Not long after, Suge and Pac were headed to Club 662 and while at a stoplight a white Cadillac with California plates pulled up next them and opened fired. While it seemed pretty straightforward , what grew from that tragic night was nothing short of fantasy.
Make no mistake, it was pretty clear from the get go that Baby Lane shot and killed Tupac Shakur. Before Orlando “Baby Lane’ Anderson’s demise, he was even interviewed on live TV about his “alleged” involvement is the superstar’s death. Which is why I’m a bit shocked with all the buzz this past week surrounding Keefe D’s so-called “confession” that was built on in this month’s “Who Killed Tupac?” investigation.
Keefe D and Orlando “Baby Lane” Anderson Mugshots in the late 90’s
First, this is not “news” or nothing new. Duane Keith Davis aka Keffe D has been making this claim for quite some time. I suppose the real reason this “confession” went mainstream is due to Netflix exploiting 2pac’s death by airing Keffe D and his bullshit story. Keffe D has long perpetuated that he not only was “Compton’s Kingpin”, but a close friend of Sean “Puff Daddy/P. Diddy/Puffy/Diddy” and was involved in his nephew’s shooting of 2pac.
Second, it’s all bullshit. Let’s just make one thing clear, Keffe D is a former low level gangbanger with nothing to show for it. To this very day Compton taggers will throw up a mural of Baby Lane for killing a “civilian”. While I’m certainly no expert on Compton, California hood politics nor a historian of them, I can say with a high degree of certainty that killing a rap superstar turned Los Angeles or Compton gangbanger wannabe is no badge of honor. Something I’m sure Baby Lane wouldn’t want to be only known for. Which Netflix leaves one to wonder, why would Keefe D? Certainly a self-anointed and proclaimed “Compton Kingpin” would have a much larger legacy than being the wheelman for his nephew clipping a rival Blood wannabe in Las Vegas.
In other recent unrelated yet related news, Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder Damon Dash recently claimed that XXXTentacion was “definitely going to be looked at from this 15 to 25-year-old generation as Tupac and Biggie”, which was another subject I planned on griping about. Why not kill two birds with one stone? My first complaint of course would be pointing out that XXXTentacion couldn’t touch 2pac in terms of talent and influence that Pac had a generation ago in the late nineties and early aughts. Then after thinking about it over a few nights, I was reminded that Pac had only just shot to superstar status with the legendary and epic “All Eyez on Me” just months before his demise which further put him in the spotlight. Only time will tell with XXXTentacion- providing that there is enough material to launch two or three full length albums and a handful of mixtapes to be cranked in the clubs.
More importantly, XXXTentacion’s murder left me reflecting on 2pac and his legacy. In many ways, I could relate to Pac. Born of a single mother. Never met my real father. My mother in many ways had an activist background, sent me to one of the best schools and yet, I was on the wrong side of the law. After his death though, he sort of became a mythical being that was more than a man. Worse, Pac had a hand in his own demise. Virtually every rapper that came out of the “gangsta rap” boom of the late eighties and early nineties had one goal- tell their story and get up out of the hood. There is no doubt in my mind that Suge Knight inspired to be nothing more than a crime boss, but 2pac was a smart man. Why would he go retrograde, start gangbanging and claiming LA? MC Eiht touched a bit on the subject in an interview on Vlad TV.
One could certainly speculate that he felt he owed it to Suge, but cash is king. No reason to get into street squabbles with whom characters on both sides you don’t know and have no familiarity with. Then there is ‘Keefe D’, supposedly “Compton Kingpin”- but now attempting to cement his legacy as the wheelman in what is perhaps the most famous drive-by in history. Even in my heyday when I thought street cred and rep meant everything, I certainly wouldn’t have lowered myself to being a wheelman when all was said and done. I would imagine that a city’s kingpin, Compton especially would have more regrets and much more to apologize for. Yet in his dying days, a gangster’s memoir and his contribution to Compton street politics was driving to gun down 2pac, whom had no history or clout in Compton.
As I said earlier, there is no doubt in my mind that Baby Lane killed 2pac that night. It sounds just like every murder I’ve ever known growing up. Someone’s pride took a beating and they decided to dispense some justice. As for Keefe D, sounds like another rat on the street trying to be somebody by attaching themselves as the supporting cast of big time crimes, a-la Henry Hill.