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Crowd Pays Homage To The Notorious B.I.G. At Howard Theatre

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Cody Valentine of alternative hip-hop group All The Best Kids organized the Biggie Smalls Tribute concert in memory of his favorite rapper. He says Biggie may be dead, "but the energy that he set in motion still exists, and we all pull from it."
Paige Nelson
Cody Valentine of alternative hip-hop group All The Best Kids organized the Biggie Smalls Tribute concert in memory of his favorite rapper. He says Biggie may be dead, "but the energy that he set in motion still exists, and we all pull from it."

Rap legend The Notorious B.I.G. died 17 years ago, but on Monday night his songs were given new life at a tribute concert held in his memory.

More than 150 people came out to The Howard Theatre to pay homage to The Notorious B.I.G., a rapper also known as Biggie Smalls. The line-up featured 25 different vocalists and rappers, including many locals such as alternative hip-hop group All The Best Kids and veteran artist Asheru.

"You know, hip-hop lives. You know, long after the artist is gone, the music remains," said Asheru. "The culture is going to always keep our lost and fallen people in its memory."

While most of the crew sang Biggie's original lyrics, in "Sky's The Limit," 14-year-old D.C. rapper Rasaan Johnson gave the crowd a homespun verse.

"I just you know, wrote to the same cadence so it has the same rhythm and everything," Johnson said.

Johnson doesn't see Biggie as a role model, but says he does have "mad respect" for the man he calls "a major part of rap history."

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