Hip hop community pay their respects to ‘Just A Friend’ rapper Biz Markie.
His wife, Tara Hall, was reportedly with him when he died and held his hand as he took his last breath.
“We are grateful for the many calls and prayers of support that we have received during this difficult time,” a rep tells TMZ. “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, spanning over 35 years. He leaves behind a wife, many family members and close friends who will miss his vibrant personality, constant jokes and frequent banter.”
Biz, real named Marcel Theo Hall – first made a name for himself in 1989 when his single “Just a Friend,” from his sophomore album The Biz Never Sleeps became a Top 40 hit in multiple countries and went platinum. The track reached No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100, while the album peaked at No. 66 on the Billboard 200.
A lot of his friends and colleagues in the industry are saddened by the news of his passing, and have taken to social media to share their condolences and to also pray for his family.
Missy Elliot wrote “I can remember so many times trying to beat box like you until my lips was sore & whenever we saw each other your energy was always so full of Life/Love/& Good Vibes. Your impact in the culture Is 4EVER & you will NEVER be Forgotten.”
Other hip hop legends to send their condolences include Q-Tip, Timbaland, Snoop Dogg and Ice Cube. Read more below.