Biz Markie, the hip-hop “Just a Friend” Clown Prince, died at the age of 57

Biz Markie, the hip-hop “Just a Friend” Clown Prince, died at the age of 57

Written by Joe Coscarelli

Biz Markie, this proud rapper, DJ and innovative producer, died on Friday with his nicknamed lyrics in songs like “Just a Friend” and the weeping clown in songs like “Just a Friend” who earned the nickname Clown Hip-Hop. He was 57 years old.

His death was confirmed by director Jenni Izumi, which gave no reason.

He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in his late 40s and said he lost 140 pounds in the following years. “I wanted to live,” he told ABC News in 2014.

Born in New York City and started collaborating with hip-hop trailblazers like Marley Marl, Roxanne Shanté and Big Daddy Kane, Biz Markie started out as a teen beatboxer and freestyle rap rapper. Eventually, he made his name as a Juice Crew in Queensbridge and a resident buffoon for the Queensbridge collective on his Cold Chillin ’label, Mr. Mr. Under the tutelage of Magic Radio Operator.

In Biz Markie’s “Goin ‘Off” (1988), on his first album, Biz Markie introduced himself with a young sense of humor – the opening track, “Pickin’ Boogers” in fact, but his charm and skills were undeniable, then and to be sold to cross-listeners who are more rap-curious.

Biz Markie with direct lyrics written in part by his childhood friend Big Daddy Kane, Biz Markie was an hip-hop Everyman and his main love was music, he broke the journey on a sample of James Brown on his first hip-hop hit, ” Steams ”biographical; Snoop Doggy Dogg later adapted the song for the 1997 version.

“When I was a teenager, I wanted to go down / MC-DJ-ing with a lot of crew in town,” Biz Mark said. “So at Noble Street school, I can say, ‘Be I Be Be, Champ’ / They said no to me and treated me like a seal of wet food.”

But Biz Marks soon surpassed his classmates commercially, becoming a pop sensation when he released Cold Chillin ‘and Warner Bros.’ 1989’s hard-to-find film “Just a Friend.” Over and above the piano rhythm borrowed from the melody of the song “(You) Got What I Need” recorded by Freddie Scott and written by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, Biz Markie repeats a long story about being unlucky.

But the song in the chorus was a rough, rough song – with “yo ‘mama” jokes and Mozart’s costume in the music video – the song became indelible: “Oh, baaaaby, you / You got what I need / But you say it’s just a friend / But friend you say it’s just one. “

Writing in The New York Times, critic Kelefa Sanneh called Biz Markie the “father of modern bad singing” and wrote, “His creeping stream – out of tune and utterly unforgettable – was like something created after romantic despair and days. A night of heavy drinking.” .

Biz Markie said he should never have been the voice that handled those notes. “I asked people to sing the part, and no one showed up at the studio,” he later explained, “I did it myself.”

He would get the platinum “Just a Friend”, reaching number 5 on the Billboard Hot Rap Singles chart and number 9 on the Hot 100 genre. He realized how much he got “Howard Stern and Frankie Crocker and white stations all over the country started playing.” And Biz Markie would never reach the height of “Just a Friend” again – he didn’t get another single in the Hot 100 failed – he dismissed what he referred to as a surprising single success.

“I don’t feel bad,” he said. “I know what I did in hip-hop.”

Marcel Theo Hall was born on April 8, 1964 in Harlem. He grew up on Long Island, where he was known in the neighborhood as Markie, and took his original stage name, Bizzy B Markie, from the first hip-hop tape he heard from the L Brothers in the late 1970s. Busy Bee Starski. Always known as the robin, he once gave the deputy director of the institute a cake full of laxatives.

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He worked as a DJ and beatboxer in Manhattan nightclubs like Roxy, although his rhymes continued to be a source of insecurity. In the mid-1980s he joined the band Juice Crew, whose members began to appear on records and eventually worked with him on lyrics and distribution work.

“When I felt good enough, I would go to Marley Marl’s house and sit on her lap every day until she noticed me, and that’s how I started,” she said.

In 1986, Biz Markie appeared on one of Soxé’s oldest albums, “The Def Fresh Crew,” offering excessive mouth-based percussion. That same year, he released an EP produced by Marley Marl, “Make the Music With Your Mouth, Biz,” calling itself the Inhuman Orchestra.

“When you hear me do that, you’ll be amazed and amazed,” he threw in the title track, which would also serve as the single for the film “Goin’ Off, ”on its official premiere. “It’s a new thing they call man’s beatbox mania.”

But after the success of his first two albums, Biz Markie’s third would become part of hip-hop history for musical reasons, but that would resonate with the genre: the copyright issue.

After the release of this album “I Need a Haircut” in 1991, Biz Markie and his label were denounced by representatives of Irish singer-songwriter Gilbert O’Sullivan, and in 1972 by eight of his hit bars “Alone Again (Naturally)”. “They were sampled without permission in Biz Markie’s film“ Alone Again. ”A lawyer for O’Sullivan said sampling is a“ euphemism for the music industry, ”which anyone else would call pickpocketing; prohibiting further distribution of the disc.

This resolution would help set a precedent in the music industry by requiring that even small parts of the sampled music — the basis of hip-hop aesthetics and studio production — be approved in advance. A sampling cleansing market was taken, which remains a key part of the economy behind hip-hop.

“Because of Biz Markie’s decision,” a record manager at the time said, “we had to make sure we had written permission for everything beforehand.”

In 1993, Biz Mark responded with a new album, “All Samples Cleared!” But his popularity waned, and it would be his last release for a major label. A decade later, he returned with his work “Weekend Warrior” (2003), his fifth and final album, although he retained the importance of a culture of great personality, which was permanent in “Just a Friend.”

Full information about the survivors was not immediately available.

Biz Mark made appearances on big and small screens, usually as his version. He was seen in “Men in Black II”, heard as a spongebob in “SpongeBob SquarePants” and appeared as a professional on the beatbox for “Black-ish” and “Biz’s Day of the Day.” Gabba Gabba! ”He also became a collector of rare records and toys, including Beanie Babies, Barbies and TV action figures.

But even in the face of the news, he remained jovial, calling himself “one of those unsung heroes” and comparing himself to a McRib sandwich (“they appreciate everything they see when I pop up”) in a 2019 Washington Post interview.

“I’ll be Markie until I die,” he said. “I’ll be Biz Markie even after he dies.”

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