Biggie’s 50th birthday NYC takeover: Empire State Building lights, MetroCard, subway installation, more
Christopher Wallace, aka the Notorious B.I.G., would've turned 50 on Saturday (5/21), and the city he once called home will be celebrating his birthday with some special tributes. The Empire State Building will change its lights to red and white, with a crown spinning in its mast, on Saturday. That happens ahead of a ceremony to be held there on Friday (5/20), with Voletta Wallace (his mother), CJ and Tyanna Wallace (his children), and other friends and collaborators in attendance.
The festivities continue on Saturday in Brooklyn, when a video montage of classic Biggie records will be shows on the big display outside of Barclays Center. The same day, the MTA will release special edition MetroCards featuring Biggie at three subway stations near his old neighborhood: Lafayette Avenue, Clinton-Washington Ave, and Atlantic Ave-Barclays Center. The Clinton-Washington Ave Station will also get a "King of New York"-inspired Biggie takeover from Amazon Music (similar, perhaps, to the David Bowie-themed Broadway-Lafayette takeover in 2018).
There are already iconic Biggie murals in Brooklyn, and Amazon Music and Beautify Earth will be debuting new ones from local artists in each borough.
Lincoln Center will continue to celebrate Biggie in June when they hold a free orchestral tribute to him on June 10, with appearances by The Originals and special guests, and music arranged and conducted by Miguel Atwood-Ferguson. For those who can't attend, it'll also stream live on Twitch.
The same day as the orchestral tribute, Bad Boy/Atlantic/Rhino Records will release Biggie's second album, Life After Death, as a 25th anniversary super deluxe box set, with 8-LPs, a booklet with rare photos from the cover shoot, and liner notes by Sheldon Pearce, with additions from people who worked on the album.
You can also get Biggie as three different action figures (ReAction Figure, Funko Vinyl Gold, and Funko Pop! Album), and some of his records on vinyl, in the BV store.