Treach Says Biggie Did Not Set Up Tupac & Explains Why (Video)
The night Tupac Shakur was shot in November of 1994, Naughty By Nature was one of Hip-Hop’s biggest acts. The East Orange, New Jersey trio had back-to-back platinum albums. Group front-man Treach had appeared on Pac’s sophomore album, care of “5 Deadly Venomz,” also featuring Apache and Live Squad. Treach’s days with Tupac extended back to the early 1990s, when Trigga was a roadie for Queen Latifah, and Pac aided her Tommy Boy label-mates, Digital Underground. Fast friends, Shakur got Treach a part in Juice, and the relationship strengthened. In the early 1990s Tupac introduced Treach to The Notorious B.I.G. Those two became friends through Biggie’s 1997 death.
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Speaking with Vlad TV, Treach spoke with conviction about Tupac’s 1994 shooting, Biggie’s alleged involvement, Shakur’s paranoia, and musical output. Near the 9:00 mark, Treach states, “What hurt [Tupac] the worst was the New York incident where he got robbed in the studio. He was like, ‘For all I do to represent for my people, I just never thought my own people would shoot me. So that’s when the urgency of maybe [recording] two or three songs in the studio [per] day [extended] to like five to 10.” That quote closely paraphrases some of Shakur’s 1995 and 1996 interviews following the Quad Studios robbery-shooting. “That’s what really turned it up. It switches. ‘Cause after you…like me, I got jumped when I was in kindergarten by the project kids that was around the corner. That switched my whole sh*t. I was [a happy go lucky kid] ’til I got jumped, and it sparked the sh*t with me, where I’m like, ‘It won’t happen again.'”
Treach recalls visiting Tupac in the hospital that November. Pac changed hospitals, fearing for his life at the hands of devious medical staff. The N.B.N star visited Shakur after his mother called the Rap star to help calm her son down. “You gotta understand: [his] auntie Assata Shakur, she’s been exiled, and on the run, since [she was] a ’70s [Black] Panther. When she was there, in the ambulance after she got shot, [responders] were sticking their fingers in her bullet wounds, saying, ‘B*tch, you gonna die. You ain’t gonna make it.'” Treach believes that with that in Shakur’s mind, he was convinced that doctors and nurses could intentionally hurt the controversial MC/actor.
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Then Treach addresses his loyalty to both Tupac and Biggie, despite the falling out between the two men. “Once Pac introduced me to Biggie, Biggie was my ni**a, feel me? What Pac didn’t understand at the time [was] Biggie wasn’t a street ni**a. He was one of the greatest of all times and a great lyricist, but Biggie was basically tellin’ stories of the ghetto he grew up in.” Treach continues with an impassioned claim that dispels Tupac’s belief that Biggie may have set him up that night, at a studio where both rappers were recording. “Let me tell y’all some sh*t right now: what happened in that [1994 shooting], Biggie had a lot of real, live gangsters from the street with his circle. Pac didn’t understand that Biggie…while he feared these mothaf*ckas, but Biggie loved Pac. Pac’s problem with Biggie was that [unlike him], he could not [find out the thieves who shot him.”
Throughout his career, Tupac helped others, including Treach, navigate situations with gangsters. Vlad alludes to Pac mediating a problem the N.B.N MC had with a Crip set in Los Angeles. However, while Tupac was able to help others, Biggie was not in a position to help Tupac understand who would shoot him five times. “He couldn’t talk or go to none of them [around him] ’cause he wasn’t that street ni**a! Did Biggie set Pac up? I’ma say hell-f*ckin’ no! … So many people was in the studio [that night], mothaf*ckas just knew Pac was comin’, and just squatted there, waitin’ for him.”
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Vlad points to claims made by former Outlawz members. “I’m Uncle O.G.!,” touts Treach, calling his fellow New Jersey natives “nephews.” As he sees it, the beef should not be. “The thing is… Pac and Big never had the chance to sit down and get it [solved].” Treach attacks folks who ride for Tupac or Biggie, as it pertains to a 20-plus-year-old beef. “They died beefin’, we gon’ beef forever! Not on the f*ck on my watch, ’cause I know real f*ckin’ stories, man!” Pointing to his own nearly 30-year career, Treach contends that the moral of the story is “Watch who you roll with.”
Treach also tells Vlad that the same trip where Eazy-E and Ice Cube reconnected at The Tunnel nightclub, the Ruthless Records founder was on the East Coast to appear in the “Hip-Hop Hooray” video, directed by Spike Lee.
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Earlier this year, Treach helped honor Tupac at his induction into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. Last month, he made headlines when he publicly threatened Hip-Hop executive Wack 100 over disparaging social media posts about Pac. That beef has since squashed.
Treach is currently working on an O.G.ology album with Bumpy Knuckles and Trick Trick. That LP is fully produced by Nottz.