I remember the first time I listened to Christopher Wallace, also known as The Notorious B.I.G., Biggie Smalls, or Biggie. It was in the 2001 movie Hardball. The song was "Big Poppa." His deep, heavy voice was oddly clumsy, though still maintaining a steady melody. He sounded big. He sounded intimidating. He also sounded sweet, like honey. The raps just rolled off his tongue. He quickly became my favorite rapper, past or present.
I also remember the first time I learned that he and I shared the same birthday, exactly 20 years apart. His: May 21, 1972. Mine: May 21, 1992. As someone who loves birthdays and puts a lot of weight on the once-a-year celebrations, this was a very important discovery for me. The familiarity and kinship I felt with a deceased rapper from Brooklyn was in the fiber of my being, us being birthday twins and all. This year is especially special, because I'm turning 24, the age Wallace was when he was murdered.
So, for those not fortunate to share a birthday with one of the greatest rappers of all time, here is a introductory playlist that will allow you to fall in love with the beats, raps, and overall vibe of Biggie.