‘Notorious’ Soundtrack Just Another Biggie Greatest Hits Album

Thumbnail image for biggie-smalls-crown.jpgThe reason I've always had a blazing Clair Huxtable side-eye for the Notorious film is because, so many years later, folks are still finding ways to profit from familiar B.I.G. material and mythos. Rarely is there anything new added to the catalog or the story, only slight twists in the presentation seem to warrant all this pomp and circumstance. Don't get me wrong, Christopher Wallace is my #1 favorite artist of all time. I simply don't think there's enough to his body of work from which to constantly mine any material. I make proper intellectual concessions when the proceeds go to his foundation. Otherwise, what is there left, musically, to learn about The Notorious B.I.G.? Not much, judging from the film's soundtrack, which is due to be released on 1/13.

Notorious Original Motion Picture Soundtrack:

  1. "Notorious Thugs" (featuring Bone Thugs-N-Harmony)
  2. "Hypnotize"
  3. "Notorious"
  4. "Juicy"
  5. "Party & Bullsh--"
  6. "Warning"
  7. "One More Chance" remix (featuring Faith Evans)
  8. "Brooklyn Go Hard" (Jay-Z featuring Santogold)
  9. "Letter to B.I.G." (Jadakiss featuring Faith Evans)
  10. "Kick in the Door"
  11. "What's Beef"
  12. "World Is Filled"
  13. "One More Chance" (featuring CJ)
  14. "The Notorious Theme" (composed by Danny Elfman)
  15. "Microphone Murderer" (previously unreleased demo)
  16. "Guaranteed Raw" (previously unreleased demo)
  17. "Love No Ho" (previously unreleased demo)

Good Lord, I thought that abominable Biggie Duets was the "Final Chapter." Let's break this piping hot mess down for a second:

(1)The stuff we already have: Please somebody out there explain to me the utility of releasing an album made mostly of songs like "Hypnotize" and "Juicy"? This is lazy. Between the albums these songs were actually commercially released on and subsequent Bad Boy compilations, we have these songs five times already. This, my people, is filler. We get that Biggie can't record any new songs, but putting this together required little-to-no effort on the part of the producers.

(2) Couple of new joints: The Jay-Z and Jadakiss tracks should've been the foundation of this album. When we consider the timeframe of the narrative, it makes sense that mostly original Biggie singles would account for the film's musical motif. However, releasing a soundtrack should be an opportunity for the label to have some of Biggie's closest friends and colleagues come in and record new tracks that evoke the feel of classic Biggie and Bad Boy without directly copying him. The Jay-Z "Brooklyn" track does a pretty good job of that. Also, as long as Jigga, Lil' Kim and Diddy have been sampling and re-fashioning Biggie's vocals and lyrics, why not just go all out here? Now you decide to scrounge up some integrity?

(3) CJ performing "One More Chance": This was the song they decided to have Biggie's 12-year-old son remake? I can't wait to hear how they flipped the lyrics so he wouldn't sound like a little perv.

(4) Unreleased demos: This may be the sole reason some might cop this soundtrack, or at least wait for these tracks to leak. Actually, it wouldn't surprise me if someone already had them. How many times have you tracked down an unreleased Biggie joint only to find you already knew the entire song by heart?

I'm starting to think these people are trying to make me hate Biggie. Why am I tired of my favorite artist? Why can't I just enjoy him without the stain of this movie, remixes, "unreleased" tracks and "duets"? And can we all just collectively admit that, while Biggie made Bad Boy good, the label itself is his legacy's cross to bear?

After this movie is released, goes to #1 first week, and experiences a 75% drop-off in the next, I want them to officially leave Biggie alone. Everything released since Born Again has been like watching someone kick a casket and going "You feel that?"



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7 Responses

  1. I really need them to leave Biggie alone. Nothing frustrates me more than what they've done with Tupac. At least its not that bad. The movie was appreciated but the soundtrack shouldve been all new material imo.

  2. Nova you right on point about Biggie being the best lyricst of all time, unlike pac who lived in the studio Big didnt leave behind 300 songs and to be honest you can only remix so much. It's time to let Biggie go and remember him for what he was ...."heart throb never black and ugly as ever HOWEVER, I stay coogi down to the socks rings and watches filled with rocks" nuff said.......

  3. +1 for keeping his memory in tact by leaving the songs alone. It's really gone too far and I also agree this soundtrack should have been more about new material that brings the spirit of B.I.G. back into the studio rather than just compiling tracks we already have, know and love. I can understand that maybe a few of them could be included to supplement the story being told in the movie but honestly this tracklisting shouldn't look so much like a Greatest Hits mixtape by "DJ Whoeverishotrightnow".

  4. I agree with them leaving his legacy alone after this. On a similar note they are doing something 'similar' with Lisa 'Lefteye' Lopes not so new album (a whole CD of remixed tracks and sub par guest features). I think the movie was a good gesture but theres something unfair about tampering with an artists work long after theyve gone.

  5. I hope they leave Tupac alone too.Goodness gracious.People can never rest in peace.

  6. this aint really tellin me nunin about bigge smalls greatest hits


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