How did The Notorious B.I.G. get his name?

The Notorious B.I.G. was born Christopher George Latore Wallace.

At Queen of All Saints Middle School, Wallace excelled in class, winning several awards as an English student. He was nicknamed "Big" during that time because of his overweight size by age 10.

Wallace began rapping when he was a teenager. He entertained people on the streets and performed with local groups the Old Gold Brothers and the Techniques. Wallace made a demo tape under the name Biggie Smalls, a reference to a character in the 1975 film Let's Do It Again as well as his stature; he stood at and weighed according to differing accounts.

In late 1993, Wallace gained exposure on a remix to Mary J. Blige's single "Real Love", under the pseudonym The Notorious B.I.G. He recorded under this name for the remainder of his career, after finding the original moniker "Biggie Smalls" was already in use.