Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

Tupac Shakur was an American rapper and songwriter born on June 16, 1971, and tragically died on September 13, 1996. He is widely recognized as one of the most successful and impactful figures in hip-hop history. Academics consider him not only a top musician of the 20th century but also a strong advocate for social and political issues affecting Black Americans.

Shakur grew up in a politically active family in New York City with ties to the Black Panther Party. After moving to Baltimore and later to the San Francisco Bay Area, he emerged on the West Coast hip-hop scene with his debut album “2Pacalypse Now” in 1991 known for its socially conscious lyrics. He continued to gain critical acclaim and commercial success with albums like “Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z…” and “Me Against the World”.

His album “All Eyez on Me” the first double-length hip-hop album marked a shift towards gangsta rap. Beyond music, Shakur also found success as an actor in films such as “Juice” and “Poetic Justice”.

Shakur’s life was marked by controversy and legal issues including a prison sentence for sexual abuse charges though he maintained his innocence and was released on appeal. He was tragically shot and killed in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas on September 13, 1996, adding to the East Coast–West Coast hip-hop rivalry of the time.

Despite his untimely death, Tupac Shakur’s impact on music and culture has endured. His albums including posthumous releases like “The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory” have achieved platinum status. He has been honored posthumously with inductions into the Hip-Hop Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame along with receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2023. His legacy continues to be studied and celebrated for its influence on music activism and society.

Full NameTupac Amaru Shakur
Date of BirthJune 16, 1971
DiedSeptember 13, 1996
Place of BirthEast Harlem, New York City, U.S.
OccupationRapper, Actor, Poet
Height5 ft 9 in (176 cm)
PartnerKidada Jones
Net Worth$40 million

Tupac Shakur’s Early Life and Education

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

Tupac Shakur was born on June 16, 1971, in East Harlem New York City. Originally named Lesane Parish Crooks his mother Afeni Shakur renamed him Tupac Amaru Shakur when he was one year old inspired by Túpac Amaru II an Incan leader who fought against Spanish rule in the 18th century.

Tupac’s parents Afeni Shakur and William “Billy” Garland were members of the Black Panther Party in New York during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Before Tupac was born Afeni was involved in the Panther 21 trial but was acquitted. His family background was deeply rooted in activism and struggle.

Growing up Tupac had siblings including an older stepbrother and a younger half-sister. His upbringing was marked by his mother’s involvement in the Black Panthers and their struggles including her brief marriage to Lumumba Shakur who turned out not to be Tupac’s biological father.

Throughout his early years, Tupac Shakur moved between cities and schools eventually settling in Baltimore Maryland where he attended the Baltimore School for the Arts. There he explored various artistic pursuits such as acting poetry and ballet and formed friendships that influenced his creative development.

In 1988, Tupac relocated to Marin City California where he continued his involvement in the arts performing in local theater productions despite not graduating from high school. His life was shaped by a diverse range of experiences and influences including his mother’s struggles with addiction and his exposure to different musical genres and political ideologies.

Tupac Shakur’s early life laid the foundation for his later career as a prominent rapper and actor reflecting the complex intersections of art culture and social activism in his work.

Music career

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

In 1989, Tupac Shakur then known as MC New York started his journey in the music world. He attended poetry classes by Leila Steinberg who soon became his manager. Steinberg helped Shakur’s group Strictly Dope land a concert and eventually got Tupac signed by Atron Gregory the manager of Digital Underground. By 1990 Tupac was working with Digital Underground as a roadie and backup dancer.

Tupac debuted as 2Pac with Digital Underground on their January 1991 single “Same Song” featured in the movie “Nothing but Trouble”. This song led their EP This Is an EP Release. With encouragement from his manager Steinberg Digital Underground’s Jimi “Chopmaster J” Dright worked with Tupac on his first studio recordings. Though Tupac initially struggled as part of a group Dright noticed his strong individual drive.

These early works created between 1988 and 1991 were rediscovered and released in 2000 as “The Lost Tapes: Circa” 1989 and later as “Beginnings: The Lost Tapes” 1988–1991.

During his time with Digital Underground Tupac met Randy “Stretch” Walker a key figure in the rap group Live Squad. Stretch and Tupac became close friends often collaborating on music and performances.

In November 1991, Tupac Shakur released his first album “2Pacalypse Now” inspired by the film “Apocalypse Now”. This album featuring songs like “If My Homie Calls,” “Trapped,” and “Brenda’s Got a Baby” tackled social issues and gained recognition from future rap stars like Nas and Eminem. Despite criticism from US Vice President Dan Quayle the album went Gold highlighting issues relevant to urban Black communities.

Tupac’s second album “Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z…” dropped in February 1993. It reached No. 24 on the Billboard 200 and featured a harder edge and more political themes. With tracks like “I Get Around” and “Keep Ya Head Up” the album achieved Platinum status and became a significant commercial success.

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

In late 1993, Tupac Shakur formed the group Thug Life with friends like Big Syke and Mopreme Shakur. Their only album “Thug Life” Volume I released in October 1994 included the single “Pour Out a Little Liquor.” Despite facing criticism for its gangsta rap style the album was certified Gold.

Tupac and The Notorious B.I.G. became friends in 1993. They collaborated on tracks like “Runnin’ from tha Police” and shared stages. However, their friendship soured after Tupac was shot at Quad Studios in 1994 leading to a notorious feud.

While incarcerated in March 1995, Tupac Shakur released “Me Against the World” which is considered his magnum opus. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 driven by the hit single “Dear Mama.” It went Platinum earning critical acclaim and commercial success.

In February 1996, Tupac’s All Eyez on Me arrived as rap’s first double album. Released by Death Row Records it featured hits like “How Do U Want It” and “California Love.” The album which signified a shift towards a more aggressive gangsta style quickly went Multi-Platinum.

Tupac had completed his fifth album “The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory” under the alias Makaveli before his death. Released in 1996 it achieved Platinum status and became a cult favorite among fans. Additional posthumous albums like “R U Still Down?” Greatest Hits and Until the End of Time continued to cement his legacy.

Tupac also made a mark in Hollywood. He had his film debut in 1991’s “Nothing but Trouble”. He starred in “Juice and Poetic Justice” with Janet Jackson. Posthumously movies like Bullet Gridlock’d and Gang Related showcased his acting talents.

There were even rumors that Tupac was considered for the role of Mace Windu in the “Star Wars” prequels a part that eventually went to Samuel L. Jackson. His involvement in the film Juice and his budding acting career made him a contender for significant roles in Hollywood.

Net Worth

Tupac Shakur had an estimated net worth of $200 Thousand at the time of his death in 1996, according to Celebrity Net Worth. The main source of Tupac Shakur’s net worth comes from his music sales and royalties. Even after his death, his albums continue to sell millions of copies worldwide. His estate benefits from the royalties generated by these sales, as well as from his songs being played on radio, streaming services, and used in movies and commercials.

Additionally, posthumous albums and unreleased tracks have added significantly to his net worth. Merchandise sales and licensing deals also contribute to the ongoing revenue for his estate.

Personal life

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

In a 1995 interview with Vibe magazine, Tupac Shakur mentioned that Jada Pinkett, Jasmine Guy Treach, and Mickey Rourke supported him while he was in prison. He also noted Madonna as a supportive friend later revealing they dated in 1994.

Tupac Shakur and Jada Pinkett became close friends at the Baltimore School for the Arts. He helped her get her first movie role in “Menace II Society” and she in turn got him a role in “A Different World.” She also contributed $100000 towards his bail in 1995. Despite a marriage proposal from Shakur while he was in prison Pinkett declined saying they shared a deep lifelong friendship.

After Shakur was shot in 1994, he recovered at Jasmine Guy’s home. They had met when he guest-starred on “A Different World.” Guy also appeared in his “Temptations” music video and later wrote a biography about his mother.

Tupac Shakur became friends with Treach during Public Enemy’s tour in 1990. They collaborated on music together and Treach spoke at Shakur’s memorial service in 1996.

In 1993, police raided Tupac Shakur’s hotel room in New York City and confiscated a sex tape showing him with his then-girlfriend Desiree Smith. Shakur faced legal troubles related to this incident.

Shakur bonded with Mickey Rourke while filming “Bullet” in 1994. Rourke described Shakur as supportive during difficult times.

Shakur had friendships with other celebrities including Mike Tyson, Chuck D, Jim Carrey, and Alanis Morissette. He also had plans to open a restaurant with Snoop Dogg and others.

Tupac Shakur married Keisha Morris a pre-law student in April 1995 but their marriage was annulled ten months later.

In a 1993 interview, Tupac Shakur criticized Quincy Jones for his interracial marriage which caused controversy. He later apologized to Rashida Jones, Quincy’s daughter, and began dating her sister Kidada Jones in 1996. They were together at a hotel in Las Vegas when Shakur was shot.

Legal issues

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

In November 1993, Tupac Shakur faced serious legal charges in New York. He was accused along with others of sexually assaulting Ayanna Jackson in his hotel room. Jackson claimed that after a nightclub encounter with Shakur, she was coerced by Jacques “Haitian Jack” Agnant Shakur’s manager Charles Fuller, and another man into performing non-consensual acts. Shakur was also charged with illegal firearm possession as guns were found in his hotel room.

Shakur was acquitted of the most severe charges related to sodomy in December 1994 but was found guilty of lesser sexual abuse charges. He was sentenced to prison where he spent time reading and corresponding with celebrities. During this period he also faced legal and personal challenges including being shot and robbed at a recording studio.

In 1993, Tupac Shakur was also arrested in Atlanta for shooting two off-duty police officers but these charges were eventually dropped amid conflicting accounts of the incident.

The following year Shakur was shot again at Quad Studios in New York an event he believed was a setup orchestrated by people involved in the music industry rivalry. These events marked turbulent periods in Shakur’s life intertwining legal battles violent incidents and accusations within the music industry.

In October 1991, Tupac Shakur was stopped by Oakland police officers for jaywalking. He claimed the officers choked him threw him to the ground and slammed his head on the concrete. Shakur sued them for $10 million settling the case later for around $43000. This incident also triggered his autoimmune disease alopecia leading him to shave his head bald.

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

In April 1993, Tupac Shakur faced charges of felonious assault for allegedly throwing a microphone and swinging a baseball bat at a rapper during a concert at Michigan State University. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in September 1994 and served 30 days in jail with 20 days suspended upon completing community service.

Shakur was set to star in the film “Menace II Society” but was replaced after allegedly assaulting the director Allen Hughes. He served 15 days in jail for this incident supported by evidence from a Yo! MTV Raps interview where he bragged about the altercation.

In Los Angeles, Tupac Shakur was arrested for speeding and police found a semiautomatic pistol in his car a felony due to a prior concealed firearm conviction. He was sentenced to 120 days in jail in 1996 for violating release terms but remained free pending appeals.

After a festival performance in 1992, Tupac Shakur allegedly dropped a pistol which discharged and fatally shot a 6-year-old boy nearby. Shakur’s registered gun was matched to the bullet but no charges were filed against his stepbrother who was suspected of firing the gun. The boy’s mother filed a wrongful death suit against Shakur settled for $300000 to $500000.

Civil rights activist C. Delores Tucker sued Shakur’s estate claiming distress from lyrics in his songs “How Do U Want It” and “Wonda Why They Call U Bitch.” The lawsuit was later dismissed in federal court.

Death

Tupac Shakur Biography, Career, Net Worth, And Other Interesting Facts

On the night of September 7, 1996, Tupac Shakur was in Las Vegas to watch a boxing match with Suge Knight. After the fight, there was a confrontation in the hotel lobby where Shakur was told about someone who had allegedly tried to rob them earlier. Later Shakur and Knight left for a nightclub in a convoy of cars.

Around 11 pm police stopped their car for loud music and no license plates, but let them go after finding the plates in the trunk. At 11:15 pm while stopped at a light another car pulled up and someone inside shot Shakur several times injuring him severely. He was rushed to the hospital but died six days later from complications related to his wounds.

Over the years various theories and investigations have circulated about his murder. In 2002, a journalist claimed that the shooting was done by someone Shakur’s group had a run-in with earlier but police investigations did not conclusively prove this. In 2011, FBI documents revealed threats against Shakur by extremist groups though no direct link to his murder was found.

In July 2023 Las Vegas police searched for more clues and in September 2023 they arrested a suspect named Duane “Keefe D” Davis. He pleaded not guilty in November 2023.