Tupac’s Mike Tyson Fight Song Focus of New Documentary
Tupac Shakur‘s triumphs and tribulations were showcased during a special documentary that aired as part of ESPN’s ’30 for 30′ series on Tuesday night. Titled ‘One Night in Vegas,’ the 52-minute video detailed the night of September 7, 1996, where Mike Tyson claimed the heavyweight championship title against Bruce Sheldon and, unfortunately, Tupac was shot shortly after.
While the doc described both men’s accomplishments on the come-up — Tupac starring in ‘Poetic Justice’ and Tyson holding the WBC, WBA and IBF titles at just 21-years-old — it also featured their respective prison stints and their blossoming friendship. As a result of the latter, the boxing champ called on the rapper to create an introductory song, which would play as Tyson entered the ring to face Bruce Sheldon on that fateful night.
Scott Guiterrez, a producer working out of Track Record studios in North Hollywood, Calif., revealed the story surrounding the famed track, in which Tupac dubbed Mike a “ghetto gladiator.”
“We got a call on a Monday, Tuesday, I think it was, that we were gonna actually do a song for Mike Tyson,” said Guiterrez. “Tupac was gonna come in lay some lyrics down on a beat that we made and we were gonna ship it off to Vegas so that way they could play it during the fight. We came in for a couple of days, busted out the beat. Got a call Friday morning saying, ”Pac’s gonna show up, make sure we’re on point.’”
“[Tupac] comes out the limo, walks in the door, says ‘What’s up?” Guiterrez recalls the rapper’s demeanor as he entered the studio to record. “Walks right into the room. I started playing the beat, he said, ‘Turn it up.’ Cranked it up for him, let him feel it. The man listened down maybe two, three times. At most, within 15 minutes. The track was about six minutes long … [He] had everything, pad and paper in his hand writing. The whole time he was listening, just writing, just writing… ‘Yo, roll a blunt.’ Writing, writing. ‘Where’s my Hennessy?’ Writing, writing. Next thing you know it, he stops… ‘Let’s do it.’ In less than 20 minutes, from the time the man walked into the door until the time he walked out of that room — 20 minutes, the song was done.”
Watch the video in its entirety below.