Over eight years and six released albums since his death, west coast rapper, Tupac Shakur will once again prove to the world that he still lives on…through his voice. Rapper/producer Eminem has taken on a new project, in conjunction with Shakur’s mother, Afeni Shakur, and produced a twelve -track album based around unreleased verses from the late Tupac Shakur.
The album, entitled “Loyal to the Game,” is set to be released just in time for the holidays on December 14, 2004 and will the seventh posthumous album of Shakur’s music released since his death in 1996.
The project initially began several months ago when Eminem was approached by Ms. Shakur, co-executive producer, and asked to be one of several A-list producers to contribute tracks to the album, as said on MtvAsia.com.
According to his label, Eminem wanted to take on a greater part of the project and he ended up producing 12 of the 16 songs, including the first single. Music producers, Raphael Saadiq, Scott Storch and Red Spyda produced the additional tracks on the album.
According to Chartattack.com, Shakur’s new album will be a follow-up to the three songs Eminem produced for 2003’s “Tupac Resurrection” soundtrack, which included the hit single “Runnin’ featuring the late Notorious B.I.G.
Including his own voice, Eminem also features guest appearances from some of the most notable artists in the rap industry, including 50 Cent, Obie Trice, Nate Dogg, Lloyd Banks, Sleepy Brown, Young Buck and even R&B legend Ronald Isley.
The first single to be released entitled "Thugs Get Lonely Too" tells of Tupac’s insecurities wondering if his girlfriend is faithful to him while he is touring on the road and his girlfriend feeling the same insecurities.
As stated on MtvAsia.com, " ‘It ain’t easy being me/ Life of a celebrity is less than heavenly,’ Pac rhymes before going on to say he was leery about his best friend at his house trying to ‘mack’ his wife while he’s on the road. Hook-singing specialist Nate Dogg comes in on the chorus, singing,‘I’m rolling out on tour today/ You getting sad I’m going away/ Chickenheads wanna play with me/ You getting mad ’cause you think I’mma sway/ … I’ll still be getting lonely for you/ I’m coming home soon as I make this pay."
Even though some loyal Tupac fans are delighted to once again hear new Tupac material, some do not support the effort of Eminem, Amaru and Interscope records. According to Rapnews.com, many fans are
speaking out and creating online petitions. Those who are putting their signatures on the petitions feel that Eminem is exploiting and altering Tupac’s music by having guest appearances. They also do not understand the direction Tupac’s music is heading.
In addition to Eminem’s Tupac project, he also has his own much-anticipated album, Encore, due out in stores on November 16, 2004.