“I’m Ridin’ For Y’all”
22 years ago, on the 4th of July 1996, Tupac Shakur performed live at The House Of Blues on Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. Tupac wasn’t the only performing act that night, The Outlawz accompanied Tupac, Snoop Dogg and Tha Dogg Pound were billed as the headliners and K-Ci & JoJo made an appearance too. This performance was featured in the 2017 biopic ‘All Eyez on Me’.
Tupac, dressed in a white tank top, black shirt and baggy white pants, opens his set all guns blazing with the firey ‘Ambitionz Az a Ridah’ then goes onto perform another seven hits in his set including ‘Troublesome’ ‘All About You’ ‘So Many Tears’ ‘How Do You Want It’ featuring K-Ci & JoJo and the menacing ‘Hit ‘Em Up’ Tupac and The Outlawz performance was energetic and filled with passion.
Soon after Tupac finishes his set, Snoop Dogg and Tha Dogg Pound take to The House Of Blues stage to perform hits from Tha Dogg Pound’s Dogg Food album and Snoop Dogg’s debut album Doggystyle. They perform 14 songs, including ‘Gin And Juice’, ‘Murder Was The Case’ and ‘Who Am I (What’s My Name)’. After Snoop Dogg’s set is over, the stage is flooded with the entire Death Row Records roster. After a bit of banter and fooling around on stage, Tupac and Snoop Dogg perform their classic track ‘2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted’.
The evening didn’t go without any drama though. Hussein Fatal of The Outlawz was found to be carrying a gun when he was searched by The House Of Blues security team. He wasn’t allowed into the venue and was not able to perform with Tupac and the rest of The Outlawz.
Speaking of the incident, Frank Alexander, Tupac’s bodyguard, recalls; “About 3 hours after we left the airport, Tupac was supposed to perform at the House of Blues. It was the Fourth of July. We worked outside at the House Of Blues for hours, while Death Row was performing, and the drama wasn’t over yet. We had a major incident that night.”
“One of Tupac’s homies, Hussien Fatal, was trying to get inside and he had a Glock on him. The House Of Blues security is also made up of off-duty officers, and when he tried to go in he got searched and they immediately took the gun. Pac asked me to intervene, but it was out of my hands and out of Reggie’s hands. The best I could do was get Fatal out of the bullshit. The gun was taken and he was put in a limo and couldn’t come out till the end of the night. They didn’t arrest him and later on the gun was given back to Reggie”.
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Hussein Fatal remembers “I got caught with a gun ’cause that was the 4th of July. That was the first time i was in Cali the 4th of July, and me being young minded and u know coming from Jersey. i felt like, that I didn’t want to be in California without a gun on me the 4th of July thats just my, that’s just the way I was thinking back then.
“I winded up, Pac told us to leave the guns on the table in the living room and when we left, I decided to go back to the bathroom. And I went back to pick my gun up. When we got to the House Of Blues, I tried to, I ain’t know they gon’ be checking us cause i’m with fucking Tupac and the rest of these big time niggas. I got to the door and they started checking us and I got the gun on me I wasn’t going to turn round I thought the muthafucka was gon’ let me in”.
The whole show was recorded and was released on DVD in 2005, 9 years after Tupac’s death. The performance was Tupac’s last recorded performance. A little over two months after this show, Tupac was fatally shot in September 1996. The DVD contains five of Tupac’s music videos; ‘California Love’ ‘To Live And Die In L.A.’ ‘Hit ‘Em Up’ ‘How Do You Want It’ and ‘I Ain’t Mad At Cha’.
In the liner notes to the DVD, former VIBE Magazine editor Kevin Powell describes Tupac as “Of the people, one of them” and “Giving power to the people, as he prowls the stage”. Tupac Shakur: Live at the House of Blues Watch Tupac & Outlawz perform ‘Ambitionz Az a Ridah’ below.