March 9 will always stand out on the calendar for music fans who came of age in the mid '90s—it was on that day 14 years ago that Christopher Wallace, a.k.a. the Notorious B.I.G., was murdered in a Las Vegas shooting. So it should come as no surprise that all around the internet, people are taking the opportunity to offer Biggie-related thoughts, remembrances and tributes, as almost a decade and a half later, the slain rapper's specter continues to hang over the landscape of popular music. Here are a few highlights:
- Rapper Maino, who hails from the same Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn as Biggie did, recorded "March 9th" (as in "The greatest of them all died on..."). The tearjerker of a track finds Maino bemoaning never getting a chance to meet the legendary rapper, and crediting Biggie for being the reason he wanted to rep for Brooklyn professionally.
- Shaquille O'Neal, MVP baller and part-time MC, remembered collaborating with him (on 1996's "You Can't Stop the Reign"), and told the story of how he was originally supposed to meet up with B.I.G. on the night of his killing, but fell asleep and missed the party. "If Shaq would have said, 'You know what, I'mma come with y'all,'" theorized B.I.G.'s friend and Junior M.A.F.I.A. cohort Lil' Cease, "I'm sure Shaq would have had security and I'm sure B.I.G. would have had enough security to come with him that day to make sure Shaq was alright. So I definitely think if Shaq would have been there, it definitely would have changed."
- BuzzFeed offered their list of the top five mashups involving Biggie. We're big fans of the Ratatat "Party and Bullshit," but there's something undeniable about the "Juicy" / "Party in the USA" crosser as well.
- Rapper Jadakiss waxed nostalgic about Biggie gracing a birthday part of Jada's with his presence, sounding a little like a 15-year-old nerd nervously asking the most popular girl in the school to Prom. "I was like, 'Yo, Big, I'm having a birthday this and that, think you could come through for me? Come through right quick?," Jada recalled. "That took all, for me to build up that energy to ask...He chilled with me all night, popping bottles, chilling. I said, 'This is amazing.'" Awwwww!!
- "Meet Biggie Jr. + Diddy Jr.," tweeted Diddy, posting a video of him chilling with the progeny of he and his one-time best friend. It's more than a little disconcerting just how closely the two appear to follow in their respective fathers' footsteps (though still not quite as much as the kids from the "Sky's the Limit" video), with Biggie Jr.'s genes being especially unmistakable. "Look out for these kids, watch 'em on the rise, as they take over the world," predicts Diddy. "We on top," echoes Diddy Jr. Don't say you weren't warned.
- "HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE NOTORIOUS B.I.G.," mistakenly tweeted Philadelphia 76ers rookie Evan Turner, eventually realizing his faux pas and apologizing for his #retardmistake. Someone's assistant is about to get canned.