Rappers have been comparing themselves to Tupac forever, but teen Memphis star NLE Choppa makes an effort to look the part in his nostalgic video for “Picture Me Grapin.” The song’s title is already, as you probably guessed, an homage to the late West Coast legend, even borrowing the beat for Choppa to rap over, but the “Top Shotta Flow” rapper also apes the Oakland native’s mannerisms and styling from iconic moments such as his fashion photoshoots and Digital Underground’s “I Get Around” video. Karl Kani even makes an appearance alongside Choppa, the designer’s newest brand ambassador.
While some older heads may find the comparison somewhat sacrilegious, NLE Choppa has quickly taken on a similar mythical quality among some of his young followers and his elders have taken notice. 50 Cent recruited the up-and-coming star to feature on “Part Of The Game,” the unofficial theme song to the next chapter of 50’s Power series on Starz. Juicy J also gave his Memphis successor his blessing by putting him on “Load It Up,” and while the age gap between Lil Baby and NLE Choppa isn’t quite as large, their “Narrow Road” lent another important co-sign to the younger rapper, as did Big Sean’s contribution to Choppa’s “Moonlight.” Although the rap game is in a far different state than it was when Tupac passed away, Choppa’s charisma, flow, and nonstop grind may have him in an analogous position soon enough.
Watch NLE Choppa’s “Picture Me Grapin” video above.