Jermaine Dupri recently appeared on the Sway in the Morning show to promote his documentary Power, Influence & Hip Hop: The Remarkable Rise of So So Def set to air July 18th on We TV. During the interview Sway and Jermaine Dupri touched on a number of subjects. One topic that stood out was the dynamic of the relationship between Jermaine Dupri and Biggie aka The Notorious B.I.G. (Check the 18:53 mark of the interview) Beyond working on a couple tracks together Biggie had a true admiration for Dupri’s So So Def artists and how he ran the label.
Jermaine Dupri – Sway in the Morning Interview
Biggie was impressed by the success of Kris Kross and how JD wrote all the lyrics. Something Biggie would emulate later on with his own group Junior M.A.F.I.A. Jermaine actually submitted a beat which sampled George Benson’s “Turn Your Love Around” for Biggie’s Ready to Die album. Although it did not make the cut it did not end up being used on the Junior M.A.F.I.A’s remix to “I Need You Tonight” featuring Aaliyah from their 1995 album Conspiracy. As well as on Lil’ Kim’s “Not Tonight” from her 1996 Hardcore album.
George Benson – Turn Your Love Around
Junior M.A.F.I.A – I Need You Tonight (remix) feat. Aaliyah (prod. by Jermaine Dupri)
Lil’ Kim – Not Tonight feat. Jermaine Dupri
JD then recalled how Biggie reached out to him to remix “Big Poppa”. That very same night Biggie had JD produce “Da B Side” which also featured Da Brat. That collaboration would end up on the 1995 Bad Boys soundtrack. Biggie would even make an appearance on the remix video to Da Brat’s “Give It 2 You”.
The Notorious B.I.G. – Big Poppa (remix) feat. Jermaine Dupri
Da Brat – Da B Side feat. The Notorious B.I.G. & Jermaine Dupri.
A haunting fact about the relationship is that JD almost got in the vehicle with Biggie on that fateful night on March 9th, 1997. The party to celebrate Biggie’s Life After Death album had just wrapped up. JD was waiting for his ride. With the uneasy environment in Los Angeles at the time Biggie was concerned and told JD to hop in with him. As he was about to do so JD’s vehicle arrived. Moments later Biggie’s vehicle was shot up and he later passed away.
It is evident that Jermaine Dupri and Biggie’s relationship would have continued to grow. The two would have continued making music together. Biggie would also focus on becoming a record mogul, mirroring what JD had done with So So Def. Although their friendship was brief, the brotherhood will be forever remembered in hip hop history.
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