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Larry Busacca Archive
Credit: Larry Busacca/WireImage

It’s been 20 years since we lost Biggie, one of rap’s most influential names. Born Christopher Wallace, Biggie — also commonly referred to as the Notorious B.I.G. and Biggie Smalls — died in 1997 as a result of a drive-by shooting, and Diddy is now paying tribute to the late rapper via social media.

In 1992, Biggie and Sean Combs, now known as Diddy, met when Combs was a producer at Uptown Records. Not long after he was signed, Uptown Records fired Combs and Biggie followed him as Combs went on to create the Bad Boy Records label. Bad Boy released Biggie’s debut album, Ready to Die, which has since received quadruple platinum status and made multiple best of lists. It reached No. 40 on our list of The 100 Best Albums from 1983 to 2008, was honored as one of Time‘s Top 100 Albums of All Time, and was ranked as No. 4 on MTV’s 2005 list of The Greatest Hip-Hop Albums of All Time.

Biggie won the Billboard Music Awards’ Rap Artist of the Year award in 1995 and also nabbed the trophy for Rap Single of the Year. He racked up four Grammy nominations between 1996 and 1998, including a nomination for Best Rap Album. In 2013, Rolling Stone dubbed him “the greatest rapper that ever lived,” and a slew of artists — including 50 Cent, Alicia Keys, Eminem, and Michael Jackson — have paid homage to Biggie in their own music.

Diddy is taking the day to honor the legendary artist on social media, asking for people to rap their favorite verse from his catalog of hits, using #WeMissYouBIG. See his posts below.

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