His life may have been cut short back in the 1990s, but Christopher “The Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace’s legacy has stood tall for decades. His memory has been carried on by his family, loved ones, and community of fans who have remained dedicated to placing his hits at the top of their “favorites” lists. During his reign, Biggie helped many artists from his neighborhood find fame alongside him, including his brainchild, Junior M.A.F.I.A.

Member Lil Cease recently sat down with VladTV where he discussed his Rap career. “I really started rapping after Biggie passed,” said Cease. “When I had to write my album. In them times before that, Biggie was writing the raps for me.”

“Everybody else was writing they rhymes, though,” Cease added before naming his peers. “The main people was the main friends he had was me, Nino, Chico, Capone, and Bugsy. Nino, Capone, and Bugsy is all related. We didn’t rap, Chico rapped, though. He used to live a building away from Big. He rapped. So, most of the artists from Junior M.A.F.I.A. rapped, I just wasn’t a rapper. It was just an idea he had just for me performing with them that whole year before we got our record deal.”

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“He got his record deal, his album came out in ’94. We came out in ’95,” he said. “He used to see me rocking with them and he was like, ‘You got it, you just don’t rap.’ He used to try to get me to rap, but I was intimidated because I’m like, ‘This n*gga so nice, he’s so dope, I can’t write nothin’ nowhere near close to what the f*ck this n*gga doin’.”

Still, Biggie would encourage Cease to pick up his pen and test out his skills. The advice Big gave his friend was not to “worry about what you say, but how you say it.” Cease continued to avoid writing his own songs, so Biggie picked up the responsibility to help ease Cease into the spotlight.

Watch Lil Cease speak about the late icon below.

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