Brenda’s Got a Baby

Brenda’s Got a Baby

2Pac (Ft. Dave Hollister)

“Brenda’s Got a Baby” was 2Pac’s second single from his debut album, 2Pacalypse Now. Through the narrative lens of an abused preteen, 2Pac addresses pregnancy, ineffective welfare, and the weak family structure rotting the ghetto.

Via a 1997 New Yorker article:

Tupac said he had written the song after reading a newspaper story about a twelve-year-old girl who became impregnated by her cousin and threw her newborn baby down an incinerator. Asked by his lawyer whether he considered the song a political statement, Tupac said, “Yes….When this song came out, no male rappers at all anywhere were talking about problems that females were having, number one. Number two, it talked about child molestation, it talked about families taking advantages of families, it talked about the effects of poverty, it talked about how one person’s problems can affect a whole community of people. It talked about how the innocent are the ones that get hurt. It talked about drugs, the abuse of drugs, broken families…how she couldn’t leave the baby, you know, the bond that a mother has with her baby and how…women need to be able to make a choice.”

† It was a trash compactor, not an incinerator.

As a side note, out of the seven theories about Tupac’s death, one includes the claim that Tupac stole this song from a demo he received by Death Row affiliate Lil' ½ Dead. According to former LAPD detective Russell Poole, Lil' ½ Dead and his two brothers were the three shooters used by Suge’s ex-wife and Death Row’s head security chief to take over Death Row. There is a confessional note written by Lil' ½ Dead with more information.