Axelbank Reports History and Today

#94: Justin Tinsley - "It Was All a Dream"

August 09, 2022 Evan Axelbank
Axelbank Reports History and Today
#94: Justin Tinsley - "It Was All a Dream"
Show Notes Chapter Markers

On all our gravestones, there will be a date of birth, a dash, and a date of death. The dash (-) will represent the entirety of our lives. In his new book, "It Was All a Dream: Biggie and the World that Made Him," Justin Tinsley argues that the life of Notorious BIG is important for every American to understand because "the world that made him" is the one that made all of us, but especially young, Black men. How did an exuberant drug dealer go from navigating the streets of Brooklyn to the top of the charts with seemingly blinding speed? How did his unforgettable lyrics and beats tell the story of a young man who had come so far, but who had a chip on his shoulder over how it all started? How did New York City of the 80s impact him, and how did he change the Big Apple forever? Tinsley answers all those questions, and shows us why the life of Christopher Wallace is just as important to understand as his untimely and sinister death. And yes, he tells the story of how, "Juicy," one of the greatest songs of the last fifty years, was created.

His website is

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(Cont.) #94: Justin Tinsley - "It Was All a Dream"