As the son of hip-hop stars the Notorious B.I.G. and Faith Evans, C.J. Wallace, 22, is never short of creative inspiration. He grew up closer to his mother — he was only five months old when his father was shot and killed in 1997 — but Wallace’s cannabis company, which he named Think BIG, honors the iconic rapper’s legacy.
“Artists like Pharrell, Missy [Elliott] would be coming to the house. It was crazy and it was me and my siblings’ first real introduction into the industry,” Wallace says. “That was kind of the motivation for me to really want to pursue music, and also get into cannabis, and really continue the family legacy.” Seeing the positive effect the drug has on his youngest brother, who was born with autism, he now focuses on promoting the wellness aspects of CBD usage.
Think BIG opened just days before the anniversary of Biggie’s death this past spring, and it now features vapes, pre-rolls, and Biggie-related apparel. The brand doesn’t just highlight his dad — it also gives back, making a statement about cannabis-related incarceration. “I feel like every cannabis brand company, has a responsibility to give back,” he tells Rolling Stone in our video interview. “It’s not fair for any company to be making money off of cannabis if there are people locked up in prisons right now.” Wallace says the California Prison Arts Project will receive 10-percent of product sales.
Though Wallace didn’t have much time with his father, he feels closest to the legend when walking through the streets of Brooklyn — and when pondering about his own life as a young entrepreneur. “I feel like my parents did a really great job of keeping me humble, and keeping me grounded,” he explains. “I’ve always kept this thought in my head like, it could be worse … there’s somebody going through much worse.” When looking back through the history of his father, with the help of family members and the Notorious B.I.G.’s records, Wallace believes his father thought the same way. “He always was looking out for his friends, looking out for his family and his people. He inspired so much of what I do.”