‘Just a Friend’ Rapper Biz Markie Dies at Age 57 [Video]

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Rapper Biz Markie passed away due to complications from diabetes at the age of 57. The “Just a Friend” rapper passed away in a Baltimore, Maryland hospital with his wife, Tara Hall, by his side. According to The U.S. Sun, Markie took his final breath around 6:25 p.m. EST.

Born Marcel Theo Hall on April 8, 1964, in Harlem, New York. The rapper’s debut album “Goin’ Off” came out in 1988. In 1992, he made a guest appearance on his close friends’  — the Beastie Boys —  album “Check Your Head.” He also appeared on their:

  • 1994 album “Ill Communication.”
  • “Hello Nasty” in 1998.
  • And their 1999 double compilation album “The Sound of Science.”

MarkieMarkie was a guest singer on The Rolling Stones’ 1997 hit “Anybody Seen My Baby?” This song appears on the group’s “Bridges to Babylon” album. Not only is the rap artist known for his hit song “Just a Friend,” but he acted in the movies “Men in Black II,” “The Wackness,” and “Celeste & Jesse Forever.”

The actor and composer made incredible Beatboxing sounds with his mouth. Markie’s last released album was in 2003 — “Weekend Warrior.”

The rap artist’s death was first confirmed by TMZ. Rumors that he had died broke out two weeks ago; his representative quickly squashed the false news.

Markie’s representative released a statement announcing his death.

It is with profound sadness that we announce, this evening, with his wife Tara by his side, Hip Hop pioneer Biz Markie peacefully passed away.

The statement went on to say Markie’s family was “grateful for the many calls and prayers of support that we have received during this difficult time.” The representative’s statement stated that Markie’s career spanned over 35 years.

Biz created a legacy of artistry that will forever be celebrated by his industry peers and his beloved fans whose lives he was able to touch through music.

News of his death quickly spread across social media like wildfire. Many people on Twitter called Markie “A hip-hop icon and legend.” Durbey Ernest Macon commented on NPR’s Twitter post about Markie’s death, “He was a beloved cultural figure way before ‘Just A Friend'” He then asked NPR to “please do better! Thank you!”

Horatious Powell tweeted “Rip/ may the lord be with him and his family/ he will be missed but never ever forgotten/ growing up wouldn’t have been the same without the Biz/ that first album came out when I was at jack Robbie junior high/ thanks for the memories brother/ you are a legend.”

He is survived by his wife, many family members, and close friends. Markie’s representative’s statement said his loved ones “will miss his vibrant personality, constant jokes, and frequent banter. We respectfully request privacy for his family as they mourn their loved one.”

Written by Sheena Robertson

Sources:

The U.S. Sun: BEST IN BIZ Biz Markie death latest – Wife Tara Hall ‘held rapper’s hand’ as he died aged 57 from ‘complications with diabetes’; by Cybele Mayes-Osterman

IMDb: Biz Markie

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Heather Paul’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Inline Image Courtesy of Bennett’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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