The "Clown Prince of Hip Hop" peacefully passed away this Friday, July 16th after a long struggle with Type 2 diabetes.
The renowned rapper had been struggling with this disease for years. He was hospitalized in 2020 and suffered a stroke last year that was related to the disease. Biz Markie's declining health also led to false reports of his death last month and with his passing the family has respectfully asked for privacy.
Biz Markie, also known as Marcel Hall, was born in New York City and eventually began to rap in clubs in 1985. He was able to score a record deal for his debut album when he created hits like "Vapors" and "Make The Music With Your Mouth, Biz". Biz was well-known for his ability to beatbox and he was doing this for MC's when he finally released his greatest hit "Just a Friend" on his second album.
Biz Markie also had serious impacts on the hip hop world itself. He was the first artist to get sued for sampling a track which led to all future hip hop artists having to get the samples cleared before releasing music.
Biz had a music career that lasted over 35 years but his frequent television and film appearances also helped make him such a cultural icon. He often stayed relevant by updating the public with appearances on Wild 'n Out, Yo Gabba Gabba!, Crank Yankers, Adventure Time, and even Men in Black II.
From close friends to young artists and hip hop legends, everyone has been talking about Biz Markie's death and his lasting impact. LL Cool J made an emotional tribute on Instagram as he was tearing up on camera and reflected on his relationship with Biz and the music that he created.
Questlove is another artist that was a close friend of Biz Markie and he had a lot of great stories to tell about the rapper. It was amazing to see continuous posts about Biz all weekend because fans were able to better appreciate and understand how similar Biz's fun-loving music is to his actual personality.
A lot of who I am as a free spirit creative force is because of you. Thank you for being my Big Bro, My friend and… https://t.co/Gmpfn2YdW4— Busta Rhymes (@Busta Rhymes) 1626568978.0
It's safe to say that everyone has at least one amazing memory of jamming out to "Just a Friend" and with Biz's passing it is a bittersweet moment that makes us reflect on the artist behind the legendary music.
We wish the best for Biz Markie's family, friends, and fans during this time and hope that everyone takes a moment to reflect on the artist's amazing legacy, personality, and music. Rest in peace Biz Markie.