Recently released part four of his interview with Heart Of An Outlaw Show, photographer T. Eric Monroe details how the “I’m A BadBoy” Tupac and Biggie photo came about.
Monroe was actually in attendance at a 1993 Public Enemy show with the plan to photograph and interview Hip Hop group Onyx. After meeting with Onyx before the show began, Monroe interviewed the iconic group in the dressing room. They would then proceed onto the stage as he shot a few frames near a brick wall. After completing the shoot, this is when Monroe heard someone shout at him.
“Someone yells, ‘Yo, come take our picture’,” Monroe recalls. “I said, ‘Sure no problem give me a second’. Get myself together go over to the guys. I didn’t know who they were, I’m just like ok cool.” Monroe was not a fan of the quick photo which consisted of a Hip Hop artist with his middle finger directed to the camera. Monroe did not think anything of it after taking the photo and during the 90s such a photograph would never be featured on any publication.
Nearly 10 years later and Monroe came across the photo once again and to his surprised it was Tupac and Biggie Smalls wearing “I’ma A BadBoy” t-shirt. Along with Shakur and the Brooklyn rapper was Big Stretch and Lil Cease.
The Jersey native photographer has had the opportunity to photograph many iconic artists in the 90s such as Fat Joe, The Fugees, Ice-T, and Wu-Tang to name a few. Many of those moments are available via Monroe’s “RARE & UNSEEN MOMENTS OF 90’S HIPHOP” book series, which can be purchased here.