2Pac’s energy has turned numerous Hip Hop legends into outright fans, even more than 25 years after his passing. During his later days in Los Angeles during the height of his feud with The Notorious B.I.G., he’d routinely amplify select East Coast acts while dismissing others. Among them was Onyx, the rowdy New York trio who broke onto the scene in 1993 with their Bacdafucup album.
During a conversation on Math Hoffa’s My Expert Opinion podcast, the group broke down how they were never pressed in California when they performed “Walk In New York” from their sophomore album, All We Got Iz Us and how one infamous night in Los Angeles only amplified the song further.
“2Pac told us too,” Fredro Starr told Hoffa. “When we did that record? Tupac was like, ‘That’s my favorite shit!’ We was at the House of Blues with Das EFX. Keith Murray, Redman was there. Tupac was there.”
Sticky Fingaz added, “He was in the crowd like the No. 1 fan. This was in the middle of the East Coast/West Coast so the big question, ‘Is Onyx gonna perform ‘Walk In New York’? You gotdamn right! If we didn’t do it, he’d probably been at the bar like, ‘These n–as…”
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The song would eventually help the album debut at No. 2 on the Billboard U.S. Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums chart.
The night wasn’t the only time Onyx and Pac hung out, according to Sticky and Fredro. They would spend time at the famed Tunnel in New York City as well as the Rodney Dangerfield Club. In their eyes, he was a regular person and nowhere near the Bishop character he famously played in Juice.
“Growing up in that era with 2Pac runnin’ around the club … this n–a was a superstar,” Fredo said. “Every time you saw him, superstar. This n–a was different. So, when you see the n–a at your concert, in the audience. You’re like, ‘Oh shit! This is Pac!’ He was on another level.”
Revisit “Walk In New York” below.