“I’ll Be Missing You,” Puff Daddy feat. Faith Evans and 112 (1997)
There are lot of things that were very similar about [Notorious] B.I.G. and myself. I came up in Newark, so I wasn’t that far removed from the type of surroundings where Biggie grew up in Brooklyn. His mom was a devout Jehovah’s Witness and my grandparents were devout Christians. But most of all, I loved his spirit. I was never someone who liked to date the pretty boy or the jock. I like people who make me feel good about myself. The very first time I met BIG it was more of a funny connection. We were at an early promo shoot for Bad Boy—just BIG, myself and Craig Mack. I happened to be with Hurricane Gloria that day, who used to be down with Redman. I had just come from Red’s house. People don’t know, but Red was my 9th grade boyfriend [laughs]. Red was the church drummer at his mom’s church. This was before the music industry. He’s my daughter’s Godfather. So back to BIG…he and his crew knew Hurricane and they were looking at me like, ‘How do you know this chick?’ I ended up dropping BIG off in Brooklyn. He told me he was going to call me when he got out the car, but I hadn’t given him my number [laughs]. We got married a few weeks later.
Obviously, BIG’s death was a crazy time for me. I think “Missing You” was the first song I recorded during this period. I was still in shock; I just wanted to know who killed my husband. To tell you the truth, I didn’t even want to record “Missing You.” But after a while, I thought it would be a good idea to do a tribute to BIG and put something together for our kids and their future. Still, I didn’t want to perform that song on the MTV Video Music Awards. Once it blew up, I remember Puff calling me cursing me out like, ‘You ain’t going to fuck this shit up!’
I was crying because I just didn’t want to go onstage. Yes, I understood that ‘Missing You’ was a hit record, but performing that song was a fine line between doing something because it’s from your heart and doing it solely for commercial purposes. But this is a business, so I had to suck it up. What you saw on that show is exactly what I was feeling. I was still in mourning. I was still sorting out having to deal with his death and supporting Ms. Wallace. This all aside from having to get onstage and sing! I don’t think I’ve ever watched that performance. But God helped us to reach the best of our abilities that evening.