How Tupac Shakur cheated on Madonna with the woman who went on to become his wife
Tupac Shakur broke up with Madonna because she was white, but the real reason was that he had already met Keisha Morris, the woman he was going to marry.
As USA Network's new true crime anthology television series 'Unsolved' airs its first 10-episode season titled 'The Murders of Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G.,' the details of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls' lives are being brought to the fore once more, as the series tries to get to the bottom of the murders, and we wonder how Tupac managed to keep his wife Keisha Morris a secret while he dated the Queen of Pop, Madonna.
Before there was a Mrs. Shakur, Tupac was in a relationship with the 'Like A Virgin' singer. He had met Madonna at the Soul Train Music Awards in March 1993 in Los Angeles, the two having been introduced by 'Do the Right Thing' actress Rosie Perez. Nearly a year later, the 'Material Girl' was besotten with the rapper, or so it seemed.
A letter written by Tupac from jail that was auctioned last year contained an (in hindsight) insincere breakup message that completely left out the fact that Tupac had been involved with Keisha for a nearly a year at the time the letter was written, on January 15, 1995. Tupac excused himself from the relationship, citing Madonna's whiteness as the reason for the breakup, according to TMZ.
The letter read, "For you to be seen with a black man wouldn't in any way jeopardise your career, if anything it would make you seem that much more open and exciting. But for me at least in my previous perception I felt due to my 'image' I would be letting down half of the people who made me what I thought I was." Tupac apologized for ending thing with Madonna, adding, "I never meant to hurt you."
The letter to Madonna came just as Tupac was solidifying his relationship with Keisha, who had been with him through all his legal battles, cooking for him and dressing him up before his court appearances as he faced charges of sexual assault brought by one of his young fans among 13 criminal cases.
Keisha detailed the story of how she landed on Tupac's radar in 1994. In 2011 she told XXL magazine, "I first met him in June of 1994. We were both at a club (the old Chippendale’s club, now called the 'Capitolin New York.') It was a Father’s Day dance. A lot of people were there. I saw Wesley Snipes, Pac–it was a really nice vibe. I saw Tupac and when I saw him I was with my girlfriend, Jamie, and I told her, 'Hold my bag. I’m going to dance with Tupac.'"
Keisha continued, "I went over. We were dancing off Wu-Tang’s song, 'C.R.E.A.M.'" When quizzed on how she managed to get him to dance, Keisha said, "Oh I just grabbed him and said, 'Come on let’s go!' [Laughing] We were dancing and he was singing the words to 'C.R.E.A.M.' and I told him, 'That’s not your song. Why are you singing that?'"
The moment ended all too quickly for Keisha who said, "He was laughing and then another woman came over. She was trying to get his attention and everything, so I just walked away. I saw him after everyone was partying later on that night and I explained to him, 'You have supporters out here, you know. I know you’re going through a difficult time and I wish everything well. I feel you were put in a bad situation.'" She left the party after the interaction.
Keisha recalled, "I saw him a month later at the Tunnel [another nightclub], and he remembered the whole conversation. He told me he had been looking for me for a month — going to every club. He tried to invite me back to his hotel room. I was like, 'No, that's not happening.' He gave me his number, and I gave him my house number. We started talking from that day on."
After being declined by Keisha, Tupac decided to extend his trip, and he asked her out the next evening again. She said, "I put on a pair of jeans, a T-shirt, a baseball hat and I said I’m not going to wear anything sexy because I don’t want to give him that impression."
The two had Italian before heading to a movie theater to catch 'Forrest Gump' that was playing in cinemas at the time. Despite his initial sexual overtures, Tupac played the part of the gentleman that night as they spent a rather uneventful night, watching TV together in his hotel room and eventually falling asleep.
Keisha recalled, "I woke up early in the morning. I left him a note. Kissed him on the cheek and that was that. I did not call. He flew back to Atlanta and I went away on an overnight trip to Pennsylvania for a week. So, when I came home that Friday, there were eight messages on my answering machine."
Keisha paid visits to Tupac's home in Atlanta over the next few months, and he came to see her in New York, as well, frequently giving her expensive gifts. Keisha was quite busy, too, as she was studying at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and juggling college with her work as a camp counselor.
Tupac's 13 criminal cases did not deter Keisha from being loyal to the rapper. She reassured him, "Don’t worry. I’m going to support you no matter what. I’m in it because I care, not because I’m trying to seek anything or become someone from being with you."
When Tupac was shot five times in November 1994 during a robbery in Manhattan at Quad Recording Studios, Keisha stayed at his bedside in Bellevue Hospital Center as he received treatment and recovered from his injuries. He was sentenced the next day in court, having had to appear at the courthouse in a wheelchair, and from December that year, he spent the next few months in the Clinton Correctional Facility.
The couple had already decided to get married even before the rapper received his sentence, and so on April 29, 1995, barely a few months after he finally ended things with Madonna, Tupac and Keisha got married inside the correctional facility.
Despite her decision to remain by his side no matter he did or went through, Tupac slowly began distancing himself from her. Keisha also had to battle comments that he had only married her for conjugal visits, and when he got bail, she felt useless to him. Their marriage was annulled merely 10 months after it was made official.
Keisha recalled that time, saying, "I thought that things were changing, that he changed. Things were getting very different once he got bail, and I felt like I wasn’t needed anymore. It wasn’t a good feeling… but I just felt like, 'Wow, ok, it was over… like, ok, I don’t need you anymore. I’m getting out. That’s it.'"
However, though Keisha felt discarded, Tupac wasn't ready to let her go, and they continued to stay in touch, up until a few days before he was murdered in a drive-by shooting in September 1996, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Even toward the end, despite being engaged to actress Kidada Jones (daughter of Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton and sister of Rashida Jones), Tupac still believed that he and Keisha were meant to be.
Tupac told Keisha in the final moments they spent together, "You will always be Mrs. Shakur." Keisha recalled, "He said I was his queen and that he was my king." Keisha regrets not waking him up the next morning to bid him 'goodbye,' because that was the last time she ever saw him alive.
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