Tupac will forever be remembered as one of the most influential and popular rappers to have graced the hip-hop world. Even after almost 26 years since his tragic death, Tupac remains an icon for several generations. It appears, Tupac had that lasting effect on one of the most popular boxing stars ever, Mike Tyson. During Mike’s three-year incarceration at an Indiana prison, he received visits from some of the biggest names in the rap scene.
Mike said in a recent interview on Drink Champs, “I had everybody. B.B. King, James Brown, Whitney Houston … Florence Henderson. Everybody came,” He added, “I can’t even name them all. Just so many people came to visit me.” Though there’s no doubt that the A-list visitors caused a stir within the facility, there was one star who received a surprisingly warm welcome from inmates: the late Tupac Shakur.
Mike recalled, “I get a call from somebody; it’s 2Pac’s mother,” Mike then stated, “She explains how she knows me from her son, explains that I met him at a club one night and that he wants to come and visit me. I said great, OK.” Tyson, who was locked up in Indiana between 1992-1995, said Pac came to the facility shortly after and was greeted by a round of applause.
“Once he came into the visiting room—and there was all these hillbilly hicks, mean motherf*ckin’ Aryan guys—as soon as he came up everybody started clapping. They respected him, soon as he came in the room, they started applauding.”
Tyson said he met Pac six months earlier at an after-party at the Hollywood Palladium. He claimed he saw a youngster outside the venue and invited him in. But before the “kid” went inside, he went and got his group of friends, which included Pac. He said, “He went and came back with, like, 50 people,”
“2Pac was one of those guys. So we went and let them through the back, and somehow they got on the stage, took the mic, started rapping, and I met 2Pac.”
The boxing champ went on to explain how hip-hop impacted his life while growing up in NYC. He recalled the reaction the genre garnered during its early days, as many associated the music with dangerous crime. Although, Tyson insists he was never scared of the culture, and that it actually gave him a sense of pride. You can check out the full interview below.
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