The 100 Best 2Pac Songs

41. 2Pac f/ Synar "Shorty Wanna Be a Thug” (1996)

Producer: Johnny "J"
Album: All Eyez On Me
Label: Death Row/Interscope


Channelling Scarface with a little Nas thrown in, Pac paints a picture of how the young thug comes to be. His delivery is tinged with regret, suggesting that for many young men the thug life is inevitable. “I tell you it's a cold world, stay in school/You tell me it's a man's world, play the rules.” Is this foolishness or the realest of realities? Was he rapping about his younger self? Does he sometimes secretly wish he never played the dirty game? Producer Johnny "J"'s mournful bagpipe in the background says probably.

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