2Pac is an iconic figure in the hip-hop world, arguably of the most famous who ever did it. So when New York rapper Troy Ave proclaimed himself to be ‘Pac’s rightful heir on The Breakfast Club Wednesday morning, fans were rightfully taken aback.
Ave, whose career was sidetracked last May when he was involved in a deadly shooting at a T.I. concert, appeared on The Breakfast Club, where he opened up about his personal life, his new material, and what he perceives as his musical legacy. The latter topic took on a whole new meaning, however, when Ave (born Roland Collins) began making comparisons between himself and 2Pac.
“I go in the mutherf**king clubs and n*ggas going crazy,” he explained, “In the clubs, in the streets where they’re playing all the f**king trap music and all type of sh*t, n*ggas go crazy.” Ave then went on to up the ante and proclaim that people say “Oh sh*t, that’s Troy Ave. N*ggas, its the second coming of 2Pac. It’s NewPac. I go do shows, everything’s different. The handshakes is different.”
This isn’t the first time Ave has said something controversial during a Breakfast Club interview. In 2015, Ave claimed that he was he “represents an entire generation,” and that he saved this generation of people “from being drug addicts and turning up and wearing tight pants and feeling like they can’t have hometown pride.” Ave also vouched for the fact that was 100% independent, despite the fact that he is signed to Empire distribution, the record label behind artists like Cam’ron and Rich Homie Quan.
Needless to say, the self-imposed comparison to 2Pac is not one that most hip-hop listeners can get behind. Ave’s two studio albums to date, New York City: The Album (2013) and Major Without A Deal (2015) have both failed to move units, and while there are some parallels to be drawn between Ave’s violent past and that of 2Pac, it certainly doesn’t seem as though it’s enough to start making “NewPac” claims seem viable.