Cam'ron Says Big L's Popularity Rose Following His Murder

Killa Cam was in a group with Big L and Mase called Children of the Corn that formed in 1993.

(Photo by Jerritt Clark / Getty Images for Echoing Soundz), (Image via Big L/YouTube)

Cam'ron has stated he believed people liked Big L more following his murder in 1999. 

During his interview alongside Mase on Million Dollaz Worth of Game, Killa Cam was tasked with listing his top five rappers from Harlem, and one of the obvious choices was the late rapper and his friend, Big L. The "Put It On" rapper was one of the most lyrically gifted MCs from the upper Manhattan neighborhood and was signed to Columbia Records. 

He released his first solo album, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous in 1995, which debuted at No. 22 on Billboard's R&B/Hip-Hop Albums list, but his promising career abruptly ended after he was fatally shot nine times in Harlem in 1999.

Like most rappers who have passed away, interest in Big L and his music has skyrocketed since his death. According to Cam, although his friend had elite rap skills, he didn't have time to fully break out, and his death played a huge role in his legacy.

"See n****s like Big L, that's my dude, [but] he didn't have a long time to do what he could really potentially do, you know what I'm saying? He only had one album," Cam said. "We used to freestyle and practice with each other. He's my guy, but listen for me, it's like n***as liked Big L better after he died. I think they started saying he's a legend, this, that, and the third." 

He continued, "He was nice before he died. You got to realize that him and Nas is on the same label at the same time at Columbia Records. So you got Nas and Big L coming out at the same time, and you kind of seeing who elevated more. So it wasn't like he wasn't on a major record label or he didn't have an opportunity."

Ultimately, Cam put Big L in his top five but behind Juelz Santana, although Cam also detailed why Julez never reached his full potential either.

Big L's legacy may be a reflection of an old Jadakiss line, "Dead rappers get better promotion." That trend continues to this day: Earlier this year, Spotify released a list of the most streamed rap albums ever on their platform and the Top 10 was dominated by dead rappers like Juice WLRD, Pop Smoke, and XXXTentacion.

View this video on YouTube

In 1993, Big L founded the rap group Children of the Corn, which included Cam'ron and Mase. The group also included Herb McGruff, Bloodshed, Six Figga Digga, and DukeDaGod, and each member had their own label deals. 

Children of the Corn broke up in 1997 when Bloodshed died in a car crash in 1997. The group released over 30 songs together and released a collection titled Children of the Corn: The Collector's Edition in 2003. 

Latest in Music