A street ceremony today saw the unveiling of Big Pun Plaza. It’s located on the corner of East Fordham Road and Grand Concourse.
“In his short life, Big Pun was a tremendous contributor to the vibrant cultural life of the Bronx,” City Councilman Fernando Cabrera said. “I am proud to memorialize and honor Big Pun by co-naming this intersection Big Pun Plaza.”
Christopher “Big Pun” Rios was born in 1971 in the Bronx and was interested in rapping as far back as the ’80s. However, it wasn’t until he met Fat Joe in 1995 that he first got a shot on the national stage. Pun became Joe’s protege and appeared on his sophomore set, Jealous Ones Envy, on the song “Watch Out.” Just three years later, Big Pun released his classic solo debut, Capital Punishment. Not only was it a critical success, but it also made Pun the first solo Latino emcee to go platinum.
Sadly, Big Pun passed away in 2000 from a heart attack shortly before his second album dropped. However, his legacy lives on, and this street is another way the Hip-Hop legend has been immortalized. And while he clearly had a love for his home borough – the Bronx, his appreciation for the West was apparent as well. And there is no greater example of this than his cover of Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg’s classic, “Deep Cover.”
“Dead in the middle of Little Italy / Little did we know that we riddled some middlemen who didn’t do diddly.”