The rapper’s children C.J. and T’yanna Wallace accepted the award on their father’s behalf and shared their love during the ceremony. “When my father passed away, I was only 3 years old,” T’yanna said. “Even though I didn’t get to know him the way that I wanted, through his fans and our family, I was able to see with my own eyes that his music transcended the hip-hop industry. He was able to not just become the king of New York, but the king of the culture.”
C.J. followed, “Christopher George Latore Wallace, a.k.a. The Notorious B.I.G., a.k.a. Biggie Smalls, a.k.a. Frank White, a.k.a. The King of New York. Our father was one of the founding fathers of hip-hop. He helped revolutionize what was a young art form for the Black community and the world. I’m honored to share his name and his dedication to Black music, creativity, self-expression and Black freedom.”
Biggie is one of only seven hip-hop artists to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and he joins the ranks of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Run-D.M.C., Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, N.W.A. and Tupac Shakur; he and Pac are the only solo rappers.
Elsewhere in music, OutKast and A Tribe Called Quest are set to battle on VERZUZ.