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Hip-Hop News: Tupacs 'Library Rap' from 1986 Information
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Posted by Robert
Rap News Network
10/2/2003 2:24:25 AM

Tags and topics realted to this article include 2Pac.

This was obtained from

We obtained this information from the woman who organised the event, Deborah Taylor this will be the first time most people have heard of this event although  it was touched on briefly in the book "Back In The Day"

In 1986 the Pratt Library in Baltimore planned to celebrate its 100th anniversary, and devised a rap contest for teens 13-18, to appeal to the youth.  Teens were asked to submit their raps in writing, from which the best would be selected for performing at two semi-final programs.  The rap was to be about the library and the importance of reading, and was to portray a positive message with no profanity.  The sessions were judged by personalities from a local radio station. Since Baltimore was a bit of an eastside-westside city, that’s how the performances were divided.

Tupac and his friends, who called themselves the Eastside Crew, were victorious at the eastside semi-final and moved to the final, which was scheduled to be held at a large library in the center of the city. Tupac’s group won the final in front of a packed crowd.  The judges stated, “it wasn’t the best rhyme, but when Tupac performed, he exploded, you couldn't take your eyes off of him”. The grand prize was $100.00.

The program was a huge success, but many at the library really didn't think much more about it. That was until a few years later, when Tupac achieved some fame. After his death, library administration took the rap and put it in the vault, along with original work by Phillis Wheatley and others. They were advised that because we had only his signature on the application (not a parent or guardian) they could not circulate even copies of what he wrote. MTV however, recently got permission from his mother's lawyer to allow the library administration to let them see it for an upcoming project.

It’s possible that the upcoming project they reference is “The Resurrection” book which will accompany the soon to be released biography.

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