How Former VIBE Editor Maureen Carter Got Tupac's 'Lost' Interview

How Maureen Carter Met Tupac Shakur.

In 1996, the internet was a wide open lane for exclusive content, and that went double for anything that included video. With VIBE Magazine having a strong year long web space presence with it’s www.VIBE.com online property, its New Media Creative Director at the time, Maureen Carter found a way to get the wildest interview possible. If the term “going viral” was popular back then, her candid conversation with a hyped up, super passionate Tupac Shakur would have been just that.

Carter’s intense on camera interview sparked much discussion within the music industry circles, as ‘Pac let it all out on topics of the East - West war, loyalty and what he was reading at the time. Read on how Carter, now a top executive at BET Networks, secured the greatest get to spark the VIBE brand’s internet boom.

VIBE: How and when did your career begin at VIBE, and what was your title?
Maureen Carter: I was hired to add “graphics” to an “Internet website” in 1995. Back then, programmers could write the code but they didn’t have designers that could make the graphics. This was my first job while in grad school as a visual design major at Pratt. I remember my boss at the time saying to me to give yourself any title you want so you could look back on this and say “This is a title I would be proud of,” so I named myself the hottest title at the time, New Media Creative Director.

How did you come to do the VIBE.com video interview with Tupac Shakur, and what kind of adventures did you have making it happen?
I was attending an E3 conference in Los Angeles for work and it was my first time ever going to the West Coast. I said to myself, 'There is no way I am going to L.A. and not see Tupac.' I was his biggest fan. I had confidence that I would meet him somehow, someway. I asked a co-worker, [Events Director] Karla Radford, to arrange a meeting for a VIBE.com interview, and she did. I had 24 hours to get a camera crew and a script together. I asked a senior colleague, [VIBE's Publisher] Len Burnett, for his credit card and bought a video camera in Cali. He told me not to mess it up as it will go back the next day. I reached out to my intern at the time, Larry “Blackspot” Hester, and he faxed, yes, faxed me some questions. I remember staying up all night writing more and rehearsing them.

What was your relationship to hip-hop at that point, and why did you want to speak with Tupac?
I lived [and] live for hip-hop. I was the president of the LL Cool J fan club at 15-years-old of the New Jersey chapter. I knew music was my calling. From being inspired by the Sugarhill Gang with my sister as a kid memorizing all the words to “Rapper’s Delight” to seeing every Run-DMC concert I was allowed. It was my destiny. I am one of the rare individuals who got their dream job as their first job—and for me it was Vibe.

Ironically, the first question you asked, or one of the first, is where he saw himself 20 years from now. What made you ask that question?
I cannot take credit for that question, it was Blackspot’s. I delivered it well though. Looking back, I realize that there is the gift of intuitive. I knew that his kind was special and somehow he would have an impact on the world.

What were you thinking and feeling as you sat there with Tupac?
Nervous, so nervous and that I hoped he thought I was pretty. Not for the reason one may think, only to confirm for me at that time that I had the blend of what I expected a hip-hop influencer to be: the person who had the smarts and the looks. It’s only when you get a little older that you realize the looks don’t really matter.

Tupac would only be alive only four more months after you did this interview. Was there anything he said or you felt that gave you an indication he would not be with us much longer?
No, we never know that. However, when he mentioned himself as a metaphor to Jesus’ walk before the crucifixion, I knew I was dealing with someone in a different stratosphere. Someone that was wise beyond his years.

It is deep to me that Tupac lived just long enough to be interviewed in the new dot-com space for VIBE. How old was Vibe.com when you did that interview?
One year! Yikes, it was such a great time back then, we explored with various content and technologies to see what stuck. There was no wrong answer. I am thankful for that experience in my life.

What was digital media like back then, and how has it evolved through the years?
Slow. [Laughs] I remember testing different file sizes of “cover art” and seeing how long users would wait for load times. It was a great time of exploration. Since then, new terms like social media, user experience, and digital disruption have become a part of our daily language in this space. It still baffles me that you can actually major in “digital” careers in college today. It’s an exciting time and now young people can have careers in creativity that also rank high in employment demand.

Why have you decided to speak about this interview now, why is it so important for you to share your experience with Tupac?
Because it is 20 years later. As an executive at BET, we are working on Tupac content pieces and I realized how important my experience was and how it changed my life. Time to share my story.

Why do you think Tupac Shakur has become one of the great global icons of all time, not just for hip-hop, but in general?
Some people are just blessed with that “IT”—he was one of those. There are many who followed, but there will never be another Tupac, the same way there will never be another Obama.

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Floyd Mayweather’s Daughter Arrested For Allegedly Stabbing NBA Youngboy’s Baby’s Mother

Floyd Mayweather’s 19-year-old daughter, Iyanna “Yaya” Mayweather, was reportedly arrested in Houston on Saturday (April 4) for allegedly stabbing one of NBA Youngboy’s baby’s mothers during a violent incident that reportedly took place at the 20-year-old rapper’s home. According to TMZ Sports, NBA Youngboy and the victim, Lapattra Jacobs, were inside the home when Iyanna showed up claiming to be NBA Youngboy’s fiancée and an argument erupted between the two women.

Jacobs allegedly told Iyanna to leave the home but the argument moved its way into the kitchen. Iyanna was reportedly brandishing two knives and attacked Jacobs who was later hospitalized. Her condition is unknown.

“Hold it down for your loved one’s up in heaven and they will do the same. I’m very blessed and protected if you ask me,” NBAYoungboy tweeted on Saturday afternoon alongside a cryptic post to his Instagram Story that read in part, “If I tweet don’t refer it to some p**y shit.”

Iyanna was apprehended at 1:30 a.m. on Saturday and taken to Houston’s Harris County Jail where she was reportedly charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. She seemingly referred to Youngboy as her “fiancé” in an Instagram post in January.


View this post on Instagram


Zoom in! When you call your fiancé for any small inconvenience 🤣

A post shared by Iyanna Mayweather (@moneyyaya) on Jan 1, 2020 at 3:23pm PST

The teenager is the daughter of Floyd and his ex-girlfriend, Melissa Brim. The boxing champion also shared three children with his ex, Josie Harris, who was found dead inside a parked car in the driveway of her Southern California home last month. Harris’ cause of death has yet to be revealed.

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Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant reacts during the Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals in Boston, Massachusetts, June 17, 2008.

Kobe Bryant Earns Posthumous Induction Into Basketball Hall Of Fame

Kobe Bryant will be posthumously inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, the organization announced on Saturday (April 4). The late NBA legend joins the 2020 class of nine inductees which include NBA Finals MVP Tim Duncan, 15-time NBA All-Star and nine-time NBA All-Defensive First Team Kevin Garnett, and 10-time WNBA All-Star and four-time Olympic gold medalist, Tamika Catchings.

“The Class of 2020 is undoubtedly one of the most historic of all time and the talent and social influence of these nine honorees is beyond measure,” John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, said in a statement. “In 2020, the basketball community has suffered the unimaginable loss of iconic figures Commissioner David Stern and Kobe Bryant, as well as the game itself due to COVID-19.

“We have also banded together like never before in appreciation of the game and those who have made it the uniting force it is today. Today we thank the Class of 2020 for all they have done for the game of basketball and we look forward to celebrating them at Enshrinement in August.”

The 2020 class will be enshrined in the Hall of Fame on Aug. 29 in Springfield, Mass. The date falls six days after what would have been Bryant’s 42nd birthday. The retired Lakers star died in a helicopter crash in January alongside his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna “Gigi” Bryant, and seven others.

Kobe’s widow, Vanessa Bryant, called the Hall of Fame election the “peak of his NBA career” during a FaceTime call with ESPN. “It’s an incredible accomplishment and honor, and we’re extremely proud of him. Every accomplishment that he had as an athlete was a stepping stone to be here.

“Obviously we wish that he was here with us to celebrate,” Vanessa continued. “We’re incredibly proud of him. And there’s some solace in know that he was probably going to be apart of the 2020 Hall of Fame class.”

"We're incredibly proud of him."

Vanessa and Natalia Bryant joined Rece Davis after Kobe's induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. pic.twitter.com/HX31pyvgPe

— ESPN (@espn) April 4, 2020

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Detroit Bus Driver Dies From COVID-19 After Posting About Passenger Coughing

A Detroit bus driver died from coronavirus two weeks after making a Facebook Live post calling out a passenger for coughing several times on the bus without covering her mouth. The death of Jason Hargrove, a Transportation Equipment Operator for the Detroit Department of Transportation, was announced by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan on Thursday (April 2).

“He knew his life was being put in jeopardy -- even though he was going to work for the citizens of Detroit every day -- by somebody who just didn’t care and now he’s gone,” Duggan said.

The Amalgamated Transit Union also tweeted a message confirming Hargrove’s death. Hargrove belonged to the Union since 2016 and was one of two AUT members to die from COVID-19. The second victim, Joseph Madore, was a paratransit operator for First Transit, Greater Hartford Transit District.

#1u #Solidarity #COVID19 #Frontlines pic.twitter.com/OGeW5AsL1m

— ATU, Transit Union (@ATUComm) April 3, 2020

Hargrove vented about his safety being at risk in an 8-minute video posted on March 21. “This coronavirus s**t is for real and we out here as public workers, doing our job, trying to make an honest living to take care of our families, but for you to get on the bus and stand on the bus and cough several times without covering up your mouth and you know we in the middle of a pandemic…that lets me know that some folks don’t care. Utterly don’t give a f**k, excuse my language but that’s how I feel right about now.”

Hargrove said that the woman was in her late 50s or early 60s and coughed four to five times. There were around nine passengers were on the bus at the time.

“I ain’t blaming nobody but that woman that did that s**t,” he continued. “For us to get through this ya’ll need to take this s**t serious. It’s folks dying out here [because] of this s**t. I’m mad right now because that s**t was uncalled for. I’m trying to be the professional that they want me to be, so I kept my mouth closed. But at some point..you gotta' draw the line and say 'enough is enough.' That s**t was uncalled for. I feel violated. I feel violated for the folks that were on the bus when this happened.”

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency and a state of disaster over the spread of COVID-19. Since reporting its first two cases on March 10, more than 12,000 people in Michigan have tested positive for the disease, and nearly 500 people have died. Many of the cases have been centered in Detroit and Oakland County.

Watch Hargrove's video below.


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