It’s been roughly 22 years since the death of Notorious B.I.G. who was killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles in 1997. Now, just before the 22nd anniversary of his death on March 9, his son CJ Wallace is launching a new cannabis brand to honor his father.
“Today I am so proud to announce the launch of Think BIG, my first business!” he posted on Instagram with the following commercial.
CJ spoke to Forbes about the new venture and how he wasn’t initially into the idea because he “didn’t want to make another ‘Biggie’ brand or a ‘Biggie cannabis’ brand,” but with the guidance of his stepfather, music executive Todd Russaw and creative brainstorms with entrepreneur Willie Mack he decided to create Think BIG, with them as his partners. Similar to the sentiments of actor and marijuana activist Jesse Williams, Think BIG plans to work on criminal justice reform in the cannabis space as well as charitable projects.
“Growing up, my sister and I were always told we’ll one day have the responsibility to carry our father’s legacy on. But I didn’t really know who my dad was until I got older. Before it was really just the rapper perception that everybody knew. As a child, all I heard was ‘your dad sold drugs,’ ‘your dad was in and out of jail’,” CJ says of how cannabis has helped him reconnect with his late father.
“The public perception of him was this bad guy, but deep down he was a great human, had an incredible ear, cared about his friends, his mom, his wife, his girlfriends, his daughter, his son! He cared about everybody around him, to the point where he was taking care of so many people.”
He continued, “Being on set for Notorious forced me to learn more about him and understand who he was, not as a legend, but as a man, son, father, friend, etc. My curiosity for who my father truly was started after I portrayed him.
Speaking to my mom, grandma, my dad’s family, and friends, I learned a lot more about him and myself. I started to see and understand the things we share: behaviors, mannerisms, temperament. And our love for cannabis. Both of my parents used it while making music, it was a key part of their creative processes--helping them unlock their creativity, artistry and signature flow.”
The brand’s first release, Frank White, named after one of Biggie’s aliases will be available starting April. Products—pre-rolls, vapes, gummies, apparel, and more—will be sold on the company’s website, as well as in pop-ups and select retailers.
“Ultimately I feel like he’d be really proud especially of how much positivity we are driving to normalize cannabis and finally reverse the stigma around it.”
(Photo by Frazer Harrison/WireImage)