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ONE37pm Speaks To CJ Wallace Ahead of Biggie's 50th Birthday Celebration

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Ha! Sicker than your average.

Biggie wasn’t kidding when he said that epic one-liner, and now on the eve of his 50th birthday, we are commemorating a legend. The celebrations have already started in New York and will continue with many more events through June.

Yesterday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, welcomed the family of The Notorious B.I.G to his City Hall office to honor them with an official proclamation for the late rapper, artist, writer, poet, producer, actor, designer, teacher, and leader. Biggie influenced individuals worldwide and forever impacted global culture. He was and will always be the King of New York hip-hop, as his legacy continues to be deeply felt in New York City and across the world. 

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Tonight, the Empire State Building will light up in red and white and feature a crown spinning along its mast in honor of Biggie’s multi-platinum debut Ready To Die. The Empire State Building will also partner with Bad Boy/Atlantic/Rhino Records to host a ceremony that will feature appearances from many of the industry's finest.

And that’s not all. Near Biggie’s neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant where he grew up, the MTA also plans to roll out a special edition MetroCard for the three subway stops nearest to his home. Lafayette Avenue, Clinton-Washington Avenue, and Atlantic Avenue will all feature the new subway card tomorrow. Amazon Music also plans to honor The Notorious B.I.G. as well alongside their music brand [RE]DISCOVER, which plans to ​​take over the Clinton-Washington Ave. Station to decorate it with art and murals in honor of Biggie. 

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The Lincoln Center plans on hosting an event on June 10th, and Bad Boy Records plans on releasing a limited edition vinyl of The Notorious B.I.G.’s diamond-certified, Grammy-nominated sophomore effort Life After Death, and Biggie’s son, CJ Wallace, is partnering with Lexus through his company Frank White.

Speaking of CJ Wallace, we caught up with him before the festivities.

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ONE37pm: CJ this is such a special weekend, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. Let’s first start with your company Frank White which you are using to honor your father’s legacy by helping Black people create generational wealth. Can you talk more about that?

Wallace: I’ve always been about trying to build an impactful brand that has a social-driven purpose, and we’ve been able to make real headway. We’ve got a huge partnership with Nexus which I know we are gonna discuss later. We’re working.

ONE37pm: Tomorrow, New York City Mayor Eric Adams will be welcoming your family to present you guys with the official proclamation for your father at City Hall. How is that feeling?

Wallace: It’s gonna be huge! Mayor Eric Adams met with my sister and I some time back, and he said that he was going to do some amazing stuff in Brooklyn. He kept his word, and you know he’s a huge supporter. So it’s great to have support from him as well. It’s going to be a big day on the 21st.

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ONE37pm: Then on Friday I understand that you guys are having an incredible event at the Empire State building with a ton of notable names. Tell us more!

Wallace: We’ve had to keep this on the hush hush, so now it’s cool to be able to talk about everything. This is gonna be great! Monumental! I still don’t think it’s real. I can’t wait to see it because I know it’s going to be unforgettable.

ONE37pm: Now there are more honors/events that are being planned through June including something with Amazon Music and a tribute event at Barclays correct?

Wallace: Yes! It’s crazy to see the impact that my dad has had over the past 25 years, and I’m happy to be a part of it. I know we’re also doing an event at the Lincoln Center in June as well.

ONE37pm: And you are also partnering with Lexus right?

Wallace: To be able to work with Lexus is a real game-changer. Lexus actually came to us. My dad was a real driving force in their career and vice versa. They reached out to us before they even knew about the 25th anniversary and 50th birthday. We’re happy to celebrate the collaboration, and there’s going to be merchandise, NFTs, and more.

ONE37pm: How can fans continue to keep your father’s legacy alive through June and beyond?

Wallace: There’s been a lot of cool things the fans have been doing. I know there are these three girls on Instagram that consistently dance to different Biggie records. TikTok is a huge thing, and there have been so many people who have been able to discover his different records through the platform. We also have the charity we are working with called the Youth Design Center, which is another way of keeping his legacy alive.

ONE37pm: What do you want the world to know about your dad?

Wallace: People are going to learn a lot through this new mini-doc we have coming out with Lexus. My dad was more than just a rapper. He was a great artist, and he also wrote a lot. To only have been 24 and still be considered among the greatest is amazing. He was taken too soon obviously, but he was impressive. He inspires me every day to be great and think outside the box.

ONE37pm: What do you want the world to know about your dad?

Wallace: People are going to learn a lot through this new mini-doc we have coming out with Lexus. My dad was more than just a rapper. He was a great artist, and he also wrote a lot. To only have been 24 and still be considered among the greatest is amazing. He was taken too soon obviously, but he was impressive. He inspires me every day to be great and think outside the box. 

A true legend indeed. You can keep up with CJ and all of his latest updates via Instagram.

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