Writing this article stressed me TF out. I wanted to make sure that a song that is held in such high regard in Black Culture was done it’s justice. I didn’t want anybody in these streets talking bout, “What she know about Biggie?” So I had to make sure I mapped my words all out in my head before putting them to paper and here we are. I could give you all the particulars about the song, the year it was released, who produced it, what the sample was, but does that even all matter? When “Juicy” comes on it’s story time. The Notorious B.I.G. painted a picture for the world to see, a picture that narrated his childhood to adulthood journey. From the very first line you knew he was about to take you somewhere and we all eagerly went along for the ride.
“It was all a dream, I used to read ‘Word Up’ magazine/Salt n’ Pepa and Heavy D up in the limousine…” I legit could just fill this up with lines from this song because there are just SO many quotables. Who out there wasn’t reminiscing about the “Red and black lumberjack, with the hat to match” or wishing they had a “Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis“? Well my lil 12 year old self was dead broke so I sure nuff couldn’t picture it, but because Biggie was rapping about it, I knew it had to be dope. I know for a fact I let this song rock til my tape popped. It was the first rap song that I ever learned from beginning to end, like purposely sat down hit the rewind button (I wasn’t on to CDs yet) and made a conscious effort to memorize. No regrets! Because I promise that if this song comes on when you’re out and you’re the ONLY one in the room that don’t know it… you’re getting clowned.
“Juicy” was and is Biggie’s testimony that he had made it. He was letting the world know that the once underrated, unacknowledged underdog was now on top of the world. Whether he was letting you know they were, “celebrating every day no more public housing” or that his Mom was pimpin’ “a Ac with minks on her back,” he was telling you he was now far from where he used to be, and had no intention of going back.
Shiiii when he says, “We used to fuss when the landlord dissed us. No heat wonder why Christmas missed us. Birthdays was the worst days, now we sip champagne when we thirsty…” I still feel that in my soul. Imagine that feeling of going from living in the projects, to being “Up close and personal with Robin Leach“. Ya’ll might not even know who Robin Leach is, well just know that if you were choppin it up with him back in the day… you were famous and had money and at that point, Biggie had both.
“Juicy” is more than just a song. It’s a vibe and it’s a feeling. It’s Biggie’s official introduction to the world and he made sure not to disappoint. It’s his time to brag and let those that doubted him know that they should have never underestimated his talent. It’s one of the songs that helped cement him as one of the greatest rappers of all time. You’ll be hard pressed to find a person that doesn’t have Biggie in their “Top Five Dead or Alive” list. Even though he was taken from us way to soon, 24 years ago, he has a legacy that withstands the test of time, and “Juicy” is what started it all.
So I’ma go ahead and end this with what he started it with, “It’s all good baby, baby…“.
“Juicy” was released in 1994. It was produced by Poke and Sean “Puffy” Combs. It features a sample of Mtume’s 1983 song, “Juicy Fruit”. The also features R&B group Total on the chorus, though they weren’t officially credited.
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