Thug Life: Volume 1 [Official Album], October 11, 1994
Tracklist & Producers:
Click for Lyrics & Samples
1 “Bury Me a G” (feat. Natasha Walker) – 2Pac/Mopreme Shakur/Rated R/Big Syke/Macadoshis – Prod. Thug Music
2 “Don’t Get It Twisted” – Mopreme Shakur/Rated R/Macadoshis – Prod. Jay & Mopreme
3 “Shit Don’t Stop” (feat. Y.N.V.) – 2Pac/Mopreme Shakur/Rated R/Big Syke/Macadoshis Prod. Thug Music
4 “Pour Out a Little Liquor” – 2Pac – Prod. Johnny “J”
5 “Stay True” (feat. Stretch) – 2Pac/Mopreme Shakur – Prod. Thug Music
6 “How Long Will They Mourn Me?” (feat. Nate Dogg) – 2Pac/Rated R/Big Syke/Macadoshis – Prod. Nate Dogg & Warren G
7 “Under Pressure” (feat. Stretch) – 2Pac – Prod. Thug Music
8 “Street Fame” – 2Pac/Mopreme Shakur/Rated R/Big Syke – Prod. Stretch
9 “Cradle to the Grave” 2Pac/Mopreme Shakur/Rated R/Big Syke/Macadoshis Prod. Moe-Z
10 “Str8 Ballin‘” – 2Pac, Prod. Easy Mo Bee
Released : October 11, 1994 on Atlantic Records, Interscope Records & Out Da Gutta Records
Re-released : 1998 on Amaru/Jive
Highest Chart Position : #6 R&B, #42 Pop
Certified : Gold January 24, 1996
Recorded : March 1993 – May 1994
Length : 42:28
Label : Out Da Gutta Records/Interscope
Producer : Stretch / Thug Music, Johnny “J”, Nate Dogg, Easy Mo Bee, Warren G, Mopreme, Syke, Moe Z.M.D.
Single : “Cradle to the Grave” – Released: November 4, 1994
The album was originally released by Tupac’s label Out Da Gutta Records. Due to heavy criticism on gangsta rap at the time, the original version of the album was scrapped and re-recorded with many of the original songs being cut. Among the notable tracks on the album are “Bury Me a G“, “Pour Out a Little Liquor“, “How Long Will They Mourn Me?” and “Str8 Ballin“. In 1996 Big Syke and Tupac planned to create a Thug Life: Vol. 2 which would have been released on Makaveli Records. Although the album was originally released on Tupac’s label Out Da Gutta, Amaru Entertainment, the label owned by the mother of Tupac Shakur, has since gained the rights to it. Consisting of Tupac Shakur, Rated R, Macadoshis, Mopreme Shakur, Big Syke, and with production and appearances by Stretch the album was originally supposed to be titled Thug Life: Out On Bail. The album was advertised on the liner notes of the single for Tupac’s “Papaz Song“. The single included the first song by Thug Life titled “Cradle to the Grave“. The version that appeared on the “Papaz Song” single was not accepted by Interscope Records as a single and forced Thug Life to submit a remix. The remix was later on used for the album and the video. The title song, “Out on Bail” was rejected and the album’s title was changed to Thug Life: Volume 1; although a remix of the title song by Eminem was used on the posthumous album, Loyal To The Game. The Notorious B.I.G. appeared on the track called “Runnin from the Police“, which was supposed to be track 5 of the album. It was on the Thug Life: Vol. 1 demo tape that was given to Interscope to chop and edit; this demo has recently started circulating the internet. The track was replaced with “Stay True“. The group eventually released their debut album, Thug Life: Volume 1, in September 1994 after it was rejected multiple times by Interscope. It only had ten tracks when dozens more were recorded during the sessions.
Promotion was lacking. The album didn’t sell because few mainstream rap fans knew of its existence. When Shakur was shot and incarcerated later that year, it forced Rated R and Macadoshis to part ways and the group quickly disbanded, although all remain on good terms and often collaborate on each other’s projects.
Mopreme and Big Syke continued to rap with Shakur after his prison time while he was signed to Death Row. At the end of Tupac’s life, he and Big Syke were working on Thug Life: Volume 2, which was to be released on Makaveli Records.
Future volumes were to feature other artists. Unfortunately, a second volume was never released. However, after 2Pac’s death the other artists from this album attempted to release a THUG LAW album which had only mediocore success.
The album only contains 10 tracks, because Interscope records felt many of the other recorded songs were too controversial to release.
Removed songs from the album :
2Pac, Big Syke – “Thug Life” (feat. Prince Ital Joe)
2Pac, Big Syke – “Losin It” (feat. Spice 1)
2Pac, Rated, Macadoshis – “Is It Cool 2 Fuck?” (feat. Y.N.V.)
2Pac feat. Dramacydal, Stretch, & The Notorious B.I.G.) – “Runnin’ from tha Police”
2Pac feat. Richie Rich – “Lie To Kick It”
Big Syke, Mopreme, Macadoshis, Rated R – “Straight Out Da Gutta”
The largest database track list, here.