I Get Around
by 2Pac

Album: Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. (1993)

Songfacts®:

  • Tupac Shakur made many songs with incisive social commentary, but he also released a lot of tracks where he was just having fun. This one is in the later category, as he raps about how the ladies love him, and there's no way he'll be tied down to just one.
  • Tupac got his start working with Digital Underground as part of their crew. Members of the group did production work on his first album, 2Pacalypse Now, which was released by Interscope Records after the label heard Tupac's verse on the DU track "Same Song." Tupac and Digital Underground kept working together, and group members (credited as The D-Flow Production Squad) produced this track from his second album.

    How this song ended up on a Tupac album instead of a Digital Underground album is up for debate. Digital Underground leader Shock G came up with the beat and planned to use it with the group, which Tupac was still associated with at the time. Shock claims that Tupac called him looking for solo tracks, so he put the song on a demo and sent it to the rapper. According to Shock, Tupac loved it, which surprised him because he didn't think Tupac was looking for the Digital Underground sound.

    Digital Underground founder Chopmaster J tells a different story in his Songfacts interview. Chopmaster says that Shock punched a member of Tupac's Thug Life crew over a misunderstanding, and as recompense, gave "I Get Around" to Tupac.
  • Shock G and Money B from Digital Underground each take a verse on this track. According to Shock, they had to get the song recorded quickly, so he didn't have time to write his verse. Tupac took care of it, writing the verse in a matter of minutes.

    Shock G was engaged at the time, so Tupac was careful to write the verse appropriately, knowing Shock wouldn't be comfortable rapping about running around with lots of women. Tupac's verse has shock admitting to being a freak, but making it clear that he's not about to share it with other women ("Just cause I'm a freak don't mean that we could hit the sheets"). Shock loved the verse, which contained what would become the classic line, "The one who put the satin on your panties."
  • By this time, Tupac was a very big deal: his first album was a hit and he was also a movie star, appearing in Poetic Justice with Janet Jackson. He had a team of producers working on the Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. and lots of backing from his label. This song pays homage to the group that helped make his success possible, as he makes it clear that he's still "down with the Underground."
  • The video was directed by David Dobkin, who would later direct the movies Shanghai Knights and Wedding Crashers. The video is pure party, with Tupac, lots of friends, and video vixens galore hanging out at a mansion and having a good time. According to Shock G, there was lots of real-life debauchery going on during the shoot, most of it taking place in the bathrooms.
  • Shock G built the track by sampling the 1985 Zapp track "Computer Love," where Roger Troutman sings, "you know I get around."

    The "step up" stabs are from the 1991 Gang Starr song "Step in the Arena."

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