Hip-hop has always been about appropriation. Not necessarily cultural, but at least formal–it’s a genre built on samples, riffs and reinterpretations, making collage out of found parts. In this tradition, some enterprising soul has taken it upon themselves to splice together footage of the strange and wonderful children’s television show Dinosaurs to create an alternate video for The Notorious B.I.G.’s hit single, “Hypnotize.” Dinosaurs actually predates “Hypnotize”; the show ran from April 1991 through July of 1994. The character Youtube user Benjamin Roberts chose to stand in for the hefty rapper is the dino-family’s patriarch, Earl Sinclair. The red flannels aren’t exactly DKNY, but Earl definitely has some of the charisma that made Biggie a hit from Detroit back to Brooklyn. The mashup was originally posted at Noisey.
“Hypnotize” was the lead single from Life After Death, Biggie’s sophomore album which would be released posthumously after his death in March of 1997. At that time, the promotion for the double-disc record was already well underway, complete with “Hypnotize” and its famously expensive, yacht-filled video. The hook, performed by Pamela Long from Total, is lifted from Slick Rick’s “La Di Da Di.” “Hypnotize” hit #1 on Billboard in April of that year and was nominated for Best Rap Solo Performance at the 1998 Grammys, where it lost to Will Smith’s “Men In Black.” Diddy, who produced the song, recently announced that he would be making a return to producing for major hip-hop artists.
Related: Listen to Kendrick Lamar Freestyle Over Classic Notorious B.I.G. Songs
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