20 Years Later, Lil’ Kim & Faith Evans Make Peace After A Notorious Past (Video)
In his life, The Notorious B.I.G. was closely associated with two high-profile women. Faith Evans would marry Christopher Wallace in mid-1994 after just a two-week courtship. Providing vocals to Biggie’s 1994 debut, Ready To Die, the Lakeland, Florida native would become one of Bad Boy Records first platinum R&B acts, care of her 1995 self-titled debut. That same year, Biggie would record extensively with his group, Junior M.A.F.I.A. Included in the Undeas/Big Beat/Atlantic Records collective was Lil’ Kim, a New York MC also signed to the label as a soloist. B.I.G. and Kim embarked on a very public affair, including the explicit “#!*@ Me” skit on Ready To Die, reportedly recorded as an actual in-studio encounter.
In Faith Evans’ 2008 memoir, Keeping The Faith, the singer—who was pitted against Biggie by Tupac in their 1996 feud for marital infidelities, wrote candidly about her relationship with Kim. In one passage, she chronicled a confrontation with her husband’s mistress:
“I decided that I needed to know once and for all what Big was really trying to do. On that night before Christmas, I drove to Big’s house on a mission to find out where I really stood,” wrote the Grammy Award-winning singer.
After gaining access to her estranged husband’s residence, she wrote, “I got to Big’s bedroom door, turned the knob, and went inside. As soon as I saw a small lump next to Big’s large frame, I flew into a rage, ran over to the side of the bed, and pulled back the covers. I grabbed some chick out of the bed and started beating her ass. At some point, the chick’s wig came off in my hand; it was a short, cropped wig. I stopped throwing punches for a minute to get a good look at the chick I was beating up. It was Lil’ Kim. She was completely butt-naked, yelling as I pushed her around the room.”
Faith would later write that the members of Junior M.A.F.I.A. rushed to Kim’s aid to intervene during the altercation. Faith revealed that when she later left the residence, she noticed that Kim had completely keyed her Toyota Land Cruiser.
She explained how the night ended, “He sat up in bed shaking his head. Kim left the house and I stayed, talking to Big about why he couldn’t be honest with me about her.” Kim also wrote about Biggie’s infidelities with another Lance “Un” Rivera-backed artist, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania’s Charli Baltimore.
In the memoir, Faith sympathized with the Brooklyn, New York-based MC, who would enjoy mainstream solo success before, and especially after Biggie’s 1997 murder. “I have to say I actually felt some pity for Kim. Big had a wife, and she settled for messing with him. Then he started dating [Charli Baltimore] and Big had a wife and a mistress. And Kim still settled for being the other other woman. It seemed pretty sad to settle for that.”
Following the 2009 biopic, Notorious, Lil’ Kim expressed deep displeasure and cited inaccuracy with her portrayal in a film co-executive produced by The Notorious B.I.G.’s mother, Violetta Wallace. In an interview with MTV at the time, Kim placed blame on Ms. Wallace and the respective mother of her grandchildren, Faith. Evans responded, maintaining the film’s portrayal, and dismissing Kim.
In 2016, approximately 20 years following that initial confrontation in New Jersey, things have apparently come full-circle for Faith Evans and Lil’ Kim. In gearing up for the just-announced Bad Boy Reunion tour dates, the pair was filmed at a rehearsal in much lighter spirits. The pair was caught dancing and celebrating to Junior M.A.F.I.A.’s 1995 single, “Get Money”:
While Lil’ Kim was never a Bad Boy artist, she joins the tour billing that also includes Ma$e, The LOX, Carl Thomas, 112, Total, among many others. She would appear on 1997 Puff Daddy & The Family single, “All About The Benjamins,” which reached #2 on the Pop charts. Kim was not included on that seven-times-platinum album’s cover.
Earlier this week, Biggie’s Rap contemporary Fat Joe spoke to ESPN’s Highly Questionable about a lyrically-alleged affair the late Brooklyn superstar had with wife of then-New York Knick player Anthony Mason. If true, the report settles a longstanding speculation surrounding other mid-’90s Knick players, and thus confirms another higher profile B.I.G. romantic relationship.
To date, Faith Evans and Lil’ Kim have never released a song together.
This is just the latest high-profile truce caught on social media. In the last three years, Suge Knight and Snoop Dogg were photographed together, as well as Jay Z and Dame Dash. Last week, friends-turned-foes Fat Joe and Jay were also photographed together at a Beyonce Formation Tour stop. Like Kim and Faith, all three of these examples were former associates (and business relationships) that had since soured.