Christopher Lee Rios, also known as Big Pun, was born on November 10, 1971. He rose to stardom with his debut album “Capital Riosishment,” which spent weeks at the top of the R&B/hip-hop charts. He was the first Latino rapper to have a platinum-certified solo album. His first song, ‘I’m Not a Player,’ reached number three on the U.S. Rap chart. He founded the rap group, Full-A-Clips, and developed a unique rapping style in which he could rap for lengthy periods without pausing for breath. On M.T.V.2’s list of the 22 Greatest M.C.s, he came in 11th. We owe him a magnificent birthday tribute.
Christopher Lee Rios
Big Punisher, Big Moon Dawg, Chris
November 10, 1971
February 7, 2000 (age 28)
Big Pun was born Christopher Lee Rios in The Bronx, New York City, on November 10, 1971, to Puerto Rican parents. His mother is Gail Tirado, and he has five siblings. He went to Stevenson High School. He also received some training in boxing. In his late teens, Rios weighed around 300 pounds.
Rios began working on his debut studio album, “Capital Riosishment,” in 1997 and recording tracks for it in 1998. Big Rios’s first significant hit was the remixed song, ‘Still Not a Player.’ On April 28, 1998, the album “Capital Riosishment” was completed and published, and it was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album in 1999. In 1998, he starred in the U.P.N. network’s “Moesha,” in which he played himself. The rappers’ group Terror Squad released their debut album, “The Album,” in 1999. It was well-received by critics. Rios passed away in the year 2000 and “Yeeeah Baby,” his second album, was finished after his death and released in April 2000. This playlist was a big hit as well. “Endangered Species,” another posthumous album, was released in April 2001. His unreleased works were included in the album. The album reached number seven on the Billboard 200 chart.
In 1990, Big Rios married Liza, a girl he met in junior high. Amanda, Vanessa, and Christopher Jr. are their three children, born in 1991, 1993, and 1994. Since he was a teenager, he struggled with weight. He was around 400 pounds when he was 26, and as his career progressed, he grew heavier. He died of a heart attack and respiratory failure on February 7, 2000.
Rios releases his debut studio album, "Capital Riosishment," on April 28, and it reaches #1 on the Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums chart, #5 on the Billboard 200 chart, and #11 on the Top Canadian Albums chart.
The album "Capital Riosishment" gets a nomination for a Grammy in the "Best Rap Album" category.
Rios makes his feature film debut as Riosny in the drama "Thicker Than Water," for which he receives critical acclaim.
After Rios' death, the rapper's group Terror Squad releases its second album, "Yeeeah Baby," which reaches No. 3 on the Billboard 200 chart and is certified gold within three months of its release.
Director Vlad Yudin releases a documentary titled "Big Pun: The Legacy," which features interviews with musicians, actors, Rios's close friends, and others whose lives were influenced by Rios.
Why We Love Big Pun
His dedication is inspiring
From the time Rios was a child, he had been depressed. However, he was still able to excel in his career through sheer dedication despite his family crises and physical suffering.
He was a family guy
Rios sincerely cared for his loved ones. He married the woman he loved, had no extramarital affairs, and was a wonderful father to his children.
He was a creative person
In his work, he was inventive. He developed a distinct rapping style since he could rap for long periods without taking a breath. Rios' lyrics had a lot of depth, complicated rhymes, and a lot of consonants and sounds, which made them incredibly interesting to his admirers.
5 Surprising Facts
A place was named in his honor
In March 2021, a crosswalk in the Bronx borough of New York City was renamed "Big Pun Plaza" in honor of this well-known rapper.
Rios joined a weight loss program
Rios enrolled in a weight-loss program at Duke University in 1999, and he was able to reduce 80 pounds.
His son is a rapper too
Christopher Jr., his son, is also a rapper and is known as Small Pun since his style is similar to his father's.
He got his name from a comic
Rios' rap name came from the superhero "Punisher" in comic books.
He was homeless for a while
He was homeless in the late 1980s after moving out of his mother's house when he was 15 years old.
Big Pun FAQs
What is Big Pun’s real name?
Big Pun’s real name is Christopher Lee Rios.
How much did Rios weigh when he passed?
At the time of his death, Rios’ weight had reached a peak of 698 pounds.
Did Rios have a medical condition?
According to the medical examiner, the rapper’s heart was three times its standard size.
Big Pun’s birthday dates