Legendary Rapper Biz Markie Dead at 57

Markie is most known for his single "Just a Friend" released in 1989

Art & Entertainment

Biz Markie Rapper Biz Markie passed away on July 16. He was 57. Source: MGN Online Images.
By: Alyssa Wilson

Iconic New York rapper Biz Markie has died at the age of 57, Rolling Stone reported Friday. The news of his death comes a few weeks after rumors circulated online that he passed away. 

“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,” his rep Jenni Izumi told Rolling Stone in a statement. “We are grateful for the many calls and prayers of support that we have received during this difficult time.”

The “Just a Friend” rapper has battled with health problems in recent months, including being hospitalized in April 2020 from complications with Type 2 diabetes, which he has battled since 2011. Months later, in December, he was placed in a rehabilitation facility due to a stroke he had during a diabetic coma. 

“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,” Izumi continued. “He leaves behind a wife, many family members and close friends who will miss his vibrant personality, constant jokes and frequent banter. We respectfully request privacy for his family as they mourn their loved one.”

RELATED: Digital Underground’s Shock G dead at 57 

The rapper, born Marcel Theo Hall, is the latest influential Black rapper to die. Hip hop icons DMX, Shock G and Gift of Gab also died this year in their 50s.  

RELATED: Member of Blackalicious, Gift of Gab, Dies at 50 

This is a developing story that will be updated.  

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