“Changes” was released on Tupac Shakur (stage name 2Pac) “Greatest Hits” album in 1998, two years after he was shot at age 25 in a drive by unknown occupants in a Cadillac. His death shocked the world, as the musician has been titled as one of the “greatest rappers of all time”. 2Pac’s music discussed race issues, and contemporary social issues in the poverty stricken parts of cities, and was considered an activist at the time.
“Changes” is a track dedicated to discussing the treatment of the black community by the police at the time, racism throughout America and the hope for both the white and black community to live in peace and harmony. Some of the most notable lines from the track are “Is life worth livin’? Should I blast myself? / I’m tired of being poor and even worse, I’m black”, as well as “but we can never go nowhere unless we share with each other”. The piano and chorus are sampled from Bruce Hornsby and the Range from the song “The Way It Is”, as well as re-using lines from Tupac’s previous track “I Wonder If Heaven Got a Ghetto”. The chorus of “The Way It Is” is re-sung by Talent who features on the song. The track is ultimately urging and pushing for change
The music video was directed by Chris Hafner, and is a compilation of previous music videos, interviews and pictures that were never released of 2Pac. It was uploaded to the 2PacVEVO channel in July 2011, and as of June 2019, has over 100 million views and over 45,000 comments and 663,000 plus likes.
Release Date: 13th October 1998
Songwriter/s: Tupac Shakur, Deon Evans & Bruce Hornsby
Producer/s: Big D The Impossible (Deon Evans)
Label/s: Amaru / Death Row / Interscope / Jive
Music Video Release Date: 1999
Music Video Director: Chris Hafner
Chart Rankings, Certifications and Accolades: In 1999, “Changes” hit the charts, charting #7 in Australia, #6 in Austria, #2 #11 in Belgium, #3 in Canada, #7 in Denmark, #39 in France, #2 in Germany, #1 in the Netherlands, #3 in New Zealand, #1 in Norway, #3 in Sweden, #2 in Switzerland, #1 in the UK R&B charts, #3 in the UK Singles charts, as well as ranking #32, #12 and #38 in various US Billboard charts. “Changes” has received Platinum certification in both the UK and Sweden, as well as certifying Gold in New Zealand. “Changes” also remains the only posthumous song that was nominated for the “Best Rap Solo Performance” at the 2000 Grammy Awards, and the music video was also nominated for “Best Editing in a Video” & “Best Rap Video” at the MTV Video Music Awards in 1999.