Coolio Once Called out Tupac for ‘Gangbanging’ in His Mid-20s

Tupac Shakur and Coolio had a somewhat close relationship during their reign on top in the 90s. But Coolio soon noticed a change in Tupac’s personality that didn’t sit right with him.

Coolio tried calling Tupac out for ‘gangbanging’ in his mid-20s

Coolio rapping on stage.
Coolio | Frans Schellekens/Getty Images

Coolio and Tupac were once well-acquainted with each other earlier in their careers. In fact, the “Gangsta’s Paradise” rapper felt he knew Tupac well enough to pinpoint the change in his persona. Coolio confided that the Tupac he was familiar with seemed different after the latter served his time in prison.

“When he got with Death Row, he wasn’t the same dude,” Coolio once said in an interview with Hip Hop Uncensored. “He started smoking and drinking a lot. The s*** that tripped me out is he started gangbanging. He started gangbanging in his mid-20s. He’s from the Bay area, all the sudden he’s claiming Piru. And he’s actively gangbanging. That’s usually the time [people] get out of gangbanging. It was weird for me to talk to Pac after that. He became a different person.”

Coolio would try to dissuade Tupac from further indulging in his new lifestyle. But Tupac wouldn’t listen to Coolio’s advice.

“‘I’m a grown ass man,'” Coolio recalled Tupac telling him.

Coolio once explained why his song with Tupac was erased

The world was close to seeing both Coolio and the aspiring actor collaborate on a song together. The now mythical record was done shortly after Tupac’s release from prison, and was put together by a close associate of Coolio’s.

“My original DJ, DJ Wino – basically the guy who created my sound…he did a track for Pac, right there in the studio,” Coolio once said in an interview with Pop Killer. “I was on a verse, Pac was on a verse, and I think somebody else was on a verse.”

But the song would never see the light of day because of a pay dispute between Coolio’s DJ and Tupac.

“So we finish the song, and [DJ Wino] asked [Tupac], ‘How much are you gonna pay me? And Pac didn’t want to pay him nothin’ he tried to give him like a couple hundred bucks,” Coolio shared. “I was giving [DJ Wino] $3,000 a track, but that’s my boy. He asked Pac – from $3000 all the way down to $500, and Pac wouldn’t do it. He told the engineer to erase the track, and he erased it. And I’m sure [DJ Wino] regrets that now.”

Coolio on conspiracies that Tupac faked his own death

Coolio made no secret that he offered guidance to the multi-platinum selling artist. In an interview with Spin, he discussed that he’d look out for the rapper frequently. Although Coolio considered Tupac a friend, he also saw himself as a mentor because of their age difference.

“I tried to mentor Pac,” he said. “We were peers, but he was a lot younger than me.”

Years after Tupac’s death, Coolio came across one of the many conspiracy theories that the rapper may actually still be alive. And he was, at the very least, impressed by what he’d seen.

“I saw a very – I don’t want to say ‘disturbing’ – a very informative post that implies he may have really pulled a Machiavelli and faked his death. Because if you go by the evidence on the internet, there’s no way Tupac died that night in Vegas,” Coolio said.

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