Brokers Weekly

Doing B.I.G. things

By: Bill Cresenzo
Published: 9/10/2008Source: Brokers Weekly

Former rapper moving to a new beat at Corcoran


From rap to real estate, Terrence Harding knows the deal.


The Corcoran Group broker grew up in Brooklyn with dreams of be coming a rapper. And he did, in a B.I.G. way, but now he's put away his microphone and has traded his bling for a more conservative look in order to sell New York City apartments.


"Rap is like real estate," he said. "It's all about who you know."


Harding grew up as the son of a security guard and a hair dresser. He said he was a good kid who did well in school, but always had rapping aspirations. So after he graduated high school, he took a job as a security guard, like his father, and spent his off-time in the studio recording.


His efforts finally paid off. In 1994, he was at a club called the Tunnel for an after-party for the Grammy awards. He was getting ready to leave when he struck up a conversation with a rapper, a very famous rapper who would change his life.


That rapper was Christopher Wallace, better known as Notorious B.I.G. Harding offered him and his posse a ride back to Brooklyn, and they stopped off for some grub. Before the night was over, he had rapped for B.I.G., "and we really clicked."


"To this day, I do a lot of work with his mother, through the Christopher Wallace Foundation," Harding added.


Notorious B.I.G. died in 1997 after he was gunned down during a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. To this day, no arrests have been made.


But his memory lives on through people like Harding, who quickly became close with "Biggie," and soon became part of Junior M.A.F.I.A., or Junior Masters At Finding Intelligent Attitude, a group that included another notorious rapper, Lil' Kim.


They toured the country, with their biggest singles being "Get Money" and "Player's Anthem." Harding was known as "MC Klepto" and his raps focused on the finer things in life.


"I was the one who pretty much introduced them to all the name brand stuff," Harding said. "I kind of brought the whole luxury aspect" to the group.


The group helped launch Lil' Kim's career, and they toured until Biggie was killed. After that, they tried to stay together, but Harding said the group broke up after disputes over recording contracts.


Harding said that he had always been the most business-minded of the group, and said that real estate, believe it or not, was a natural transition.


He got a job at Mark David and Company and quickly became its top producer. Other real estate firms began courting him, and he joined Corcoran Group.


He said that his rap days are way behind him, although he did consult on a movie about Biggie's life. He also participated in television specials about Biggie's life. When he's not selling apartments, he spends time with his wife and their young child.


"I'm usually dressed in suits, but believe it or not, people recognize me all the time," he said. "People stop me on the train and the street and ask me for autographs."


"Right now, I am in a more mature state," he said. "I am 36 years old. I don't see myself running around the stage. I'd rather spend my time in real estate. Rap is all about partying. When you are young, you want to do certain things, and as you get older and wiser, you find that life is not all about a party, and that it's good to celebrate when you have something to celebrate."