On March 9, 1997, rapper Biggie Smalls (aka The Notorious B.I.G.) left a Vibe Magazine after partywith his entourage, including Sean "Puffy" Combs. Biggie's car was stopped at a red light when a black Chevy Impala pulled up. The driver rolled down his window, drew a 9 mm blue-steel pistol and fired, putting four bullets into Biggie's the chest. He was pronounced dead later that evening. Theories behind the motive vary, but the most popular involves a bi-coastal feud with rapper Tupac Shakur.
New York teenager Keithroy Yearwood could be linked to a landmark hip-hop album.
The high school senior from the Bronx told the Daily News that he is the baby on the cover of late rapper Notorious B.I.G.’s 1994 multimillion-selling album “Ready to Die.”
"I just want people to know that's me," Yearwood, 18, said. "The truth is finally coming out."
Apparently, Yearwood earned $150 from the photo shoot through a child modeling agency, Chicky’s Kids, that has since gone defunct. Yearwood’s mom found agency papers to corrobarate’s the teen’s assertion.
In the "Ready to Die" cover photo, the baby is wearing a diaper and sporting a large afro.
Those associated with album—including the graphic designer–wasn’t sure who the kid was. Bad Boy Records, Diddy’s label that released the album, couldn’t verify whether it is really Yearwood on the album cover; it did say that the baby came courtesy of a modeling agency.
Yearwood also told the News that it wasn’t a huge concern to him until he was eight-years old. "Now, of course, it's a big deal to me." He added that it was a n honor to be on the album.
The Notorious B.I.G., born Christopher Wallace, was gunned down in Los Angeles on Mar. 9, 1997.
Recently, Smashing Pumpkins bassist Nicole Fiorentino claimed she was one of the kids featured on the band’s 1993 album "Siamese Dream."
Selected Readings: The Daily News, The Guardian, All Music
Published at 7:31 AM EDT on Mar 20, 2011