The Notorious B.I.G., Life After Death (1997)
Label: Bad Boy
A$AP Yams: “I started getting into rap right after Life After Death came out. One of the first records I heard was on the radio was 112 ‘Only You’ with Big, and ‘Hypnotized.’ That motivated me to buy the album. It was cool when I first heard it—it was good, but then the retro standards years later, that album sounds so ill. It took him two discs to do—he did two discs—not only that, but he was experimental with different producers, doing boom-bap.
“The way you set trends, the trendsetter is always going to have a good quality product. When motherfuckers follow that product, they probably won’t be as successful as the trendsetter, you feel me? It’s not going to work for them, but thankfully it worked for Big. The fact that he was rapping like Bone Thugs. I ain’t going to say he smashed them, he did but on the low. It would be a lot of New York bias. A lot of motherfuckers say they cut the record off after Big’s verse and shit, but I’m like, ‘Hold up, my man Bizzy went in too, chill.’
“The ‘Going Back To Cali’ record like, that album was just a really great body of work that’s timeless. It’s going to be just as timeless as any of Tupac’s records and shit like that. I still listen to that shit to this day. There’s a record on that album for every mood and every occasion, you feel me?”